Although we often do not think of the body as a machine, there is no other term that would fit. Like any machine, your body can break down if it is overworked. The purpose of this article is to inform you about the dangers of over-training and to show you why it must be avoided.
What’s The Worst That Could Happen If I Over-Train?
You might think that you are much too tough and “hardcore” for this problem to affect you. It’s easy to take the macho attitude and say “there’s no such thing as over-training for me because I want to get big.” As we will show you, you don’t need to strain yourself in order to obtain good results. For now, let’s look at the consequences.
Take a look at this study. It details some of the many negative consequences that can result from over-training. As you can see, these consequences can include muscle damage, decreased glycogen reserves, deterioration of the aerobic system, ventilatory and cardiac issues, psychological problems like depression, and poor performance overall, especially in time trials.
But the problems don’t stop there. Over-training can literally kill you in some instances. Obviously, such deaths are relatively rare, but they do happen. Some of those who have died from overtraining have been respected health and fitness experts that no one expected to die before their time. The following article gives a few examples.
The First Stage Of Over-Training
In the first stage of over-training, the signs are kind of subtle. Normal fatigue can easily be misinterpreted if you aren’t familiar with your body and its’ limits. You will feel a little bit weak, and you will likely feel some soreness. At this stage, you don’t have a big problem yet. In fact, going to the first stage of over-training can be a useful way to quicken your progress, but make sure that you don’t do this very often.
Make sure that you always stretch before a workout so that you can tell the difference between fatigue and injury. If you stretched properly before lifting, you should not experience a lot of soreness. When you do begin feeling sore, it is a sign that you need to take a rest.
The Second Stage Of Over-Training
This stage might be described as a freak-out. When your body is pushed past the normal limits, it will often respond by going all-out. At this stage, you tend to feel pumped and exhilarated. Have you ever been training and suddenly found yourself feeling like superman? I’m talking about that feeling where you think you can just keep going forever.
When this is the case, it is actually a clue that you need to stop. Your body knows that it is under extreme stress, and it is trying to help you get through the stress so that it can rest. It’s kind of like the way that a tired person will work faster so that they can go back to sleep.
Sex drive is also an indicator of over-training. Training too hard will deplete your body’s testosterone, and that is the hormone that is most concerned with sexual arousal and performance. If you notice a decrease in your sexual urges or performance, it might be that your body simply can’t keep up and is cutting energy costs wherever possible.
The Third Stage Of Over-Training
The third stage of over-training is the point where things begin to get dangerous. While you can certainly injure yourself in stage one or stage two, stage three is where you start taking the risk of serious harm.
To begin with, your immune system is likely to be compromised if you go this far. You will also be producing large amounts of a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol is normally produced when the body is in a high-stress situation such as running for your life.
Your body responds to cortisol in many ways. For one thing, your body will change the way that it uses nutrients and energy. If you are trying to chip away at your fat and sculpt an ideal body, cortisol is an enemy because it takes the control out of your hands.
Worst of all, regular over-training at this stage can cause your body to become dangerously depleted of testosterone. Once this happens, many doctors will place you on hormone replacement therapy. The problem with this is the fact that your body will stop producing its own testosterone once you begin to take testosterone as a medicine. This means that you will need to be on hormone pills for the rest of your life to maintain a healthy body. I think it is safe to say that no one wants to do this.
The Secrets For Avoiding These Problems
The trick for avoiding over-training is not a physical trick. Rather, it is a mental trick that works to divert your motivation in a more positive direction. Over-training is usually the result of dedication and hard work, which are good things under most circumstances. However, a person who is dead-set on a certain result will tend to focus in with laser-like precision so as to achieve that goal.
You can turn this motivation in a better direction by understanding that your body doesn’t really improve itself while you are training. Improvements in your body will normally occur during recovery time. So the secret is to remember this one fact: Your body cannot work and build at the same time. You have to give it ample time to do both.
In this way, you make your workouts more efficient while also helping to ensure that you don’t overdo things. besides, research shows that you can do more reps if you use a longer rest period.
Another good way to avoid this problem is through the use of cross-training. When you do the same kind of training all the time, you end up overworking certain muscles and neglecting certain others. Not only does this result in a strange and inconsistent physique, but it also puts you at higher risk of injury.
The real danger of overtraining comes from its subtlety. When you’ve got a really nice burn going on, and your adrenaline is flowing, you don’t feel pain in the way that you normally would. This is why you need to know your body and its’ capabilities.
We hope that this article has been helpful and that you will be cautious and careful enough to avoid unnecessary injury. Just remember: there are some injuries that you can brag about and others that you cannot brag about. An injury that results from your own foolishness is definitely one of the latter. Follow us on Facebook for more advice.
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