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Q:

How do I know if I'm overtraining or not pushing myself hard enough?

Hey guys,

I've been working out consistently for a month now and I'm not sure if I'm overtraining or not pushing myself hard enough. I usually hit the gym 5-6 days a week and do a combination of weight lifting and cardio. Sometimes I feel really tired after my workouts and I'm not sure if that's a sign of overtraining or just pushing myself hard enough. On the other hand, I'm also worried that I'm not seeing enough progress and maybe I'm not pushing myself hard enough.

I'm not really sure how to tell the difference and I don't want to injure myself or waste my time in the gym. Any advice on how to tell if I'm overtraining or not pushing myself hard enough? Or maybe some signs to look out for? Would love to hear from others who have been in the same boat! Thanks in advance.

All Replies

xflatley

Hi folks,

I have been lifting weights for almost 5 years now, and over time, I've become accustomed to signalling signs of overtraining or undertraining. One of the most revealing ways to determine if you're pushing yourself too hard or have not been pushing yourself hard enough is through your workout progression.

If your lifts are consistently stagnating, or you're achieving slower progress than you think you should, it may be beneficial to push a little harder. On the other hand, consistent pain in your joints and muscles, unquenchable tiredness, and lack of enthusiasm for going to the gym are signs that you might be overexerting yourself.

It's crucial to take a day off if you start experiencing any of these symptoms. Exercising more isn't always the best way to combat a plateau. Listening to your body is key, and your progress will reflect that. However, it's important to remember that everybody is different, and what is safe for someone else may not be safe for you. You should focus more on your own performance, allowing your body to adjust accordingly.

Lastly, when I experienced an injury a year ago due to overtraining, I was forced to take time off from lifting. And that's when I realized that during my time off, my body grew even stronger. I learned that taking breaks from heavy lifting and switching up my routine helped me steadily progress over time, rather than pushing myself further than what was necessary.

Stay fit and healthy!

ledner.monserrate

Hello everyone,

In my experience, I have found that overtraining and not pushing oneself enough are two sides of the same coin. The best way to hit the sweet spot between these two is to have a clear-cut workout plan that factors in your goals, fitness level, and time available.

For many years, I've worked out inconsistently, with no clear goal in mind, leading to moments where I overtrained and others where I wasn't pushing myself enough. It was only after I sat down, established specific fitness goals, and created a workout regimen that was tailored to those goals that I learned to balance pushing hard with resting.

One way to check if you're overtraining or not pushing yourself hard enough is to track your progress over time. If there are no changes, it's an indication that you need to switch up your routine or get more sleep. Secondly, listen to what your body is telling you. There are days when my muscles ache so much, and I have to take a step back to prevent injury, while other days when I feel like I could do more.

In conclusion, always remember that your body responds to change, and sometimes taking a step back is just what it needs to make more progress. Balancing between pushing hard and taking rest days is the key to reaching your goals without overtraining.

gunner.pfannerstill

Hi there,

I have been working out for over a year now and have gone through a similar experience. When I started my fitness journey, I was very motivated and would go to the gym seven days a week. However, I started to feel overly exhausted and had a decrease in strength and stamina. I quickly realized that I was overtraining.

After that experience, I decided to take breaks and listen to my body more. During that time, I also educated myself on the right way to approach fitness. Through this, I gained a better understanding of how often to work out without causing damage and when to take a break.

As someone who is always trying to push my limits, my body fat percentage decreased, and my strength and endurance improved when I found the right balance for myself. Tracking my progress and setting realistic goals helped me prevent overtraining while ensuring that I was consistently challenging myself.

Overall, finding the ideal training volume and intensity is an ongoing process, and it would be best to pay attention to your body, take enough rest days, and set achievable goals. This way, you'll be able to get the most out of each workout while avoiding injury or overexertion.

tyson.dietrich

Hey everyone,

As someone who's been working out for almost a decade, I've experienced both overtraining and not pushing myself hard enough. While it can be challenging to find a balance, focusing on recovery is vital to prevent overtraining.

One simple solution is to check your energy levels throughout the day. If you're feeling fatigued, chances are you're overtraining, and it's time to rest. A good night's sleep is an important aspect of recovery, as is taking regular rest days or days with low-intensity exercises like swimming or yoga. The goal should be to let your muscles recover in-between strength training days, increasing the intensity at a gradual pace.

But on the other hand, if you're not making any progress towards your fitness goals, you may not be pushing yourself hard enough. It takes consistent effort and mental discipline to push through the discomfort and challenge your body to adapt. A great trick to ensure you're pushing enough is the RPE scale. Rate of Perceived Exertion measures how hard you feel like you're working on a scale of 1-10, allowing you to take stock of your effort level during a workout and adjust accordingly.

Ultimately, it takes time to find what works best for you, and as you become more familiar with your body's signals, it becomes easier to strike the critical balance. Remember, rest is also an essential component of workout recovery, and taking breaks or working out at a lower intensity level can be just as beneficial in achieving your fitness goals.

wilton09

Hey there,

I've been working out consistently for a couple of years now and I've gone through phases where I've experienced both overtraining and not pushing myself hard enough.

One way to tell if you're overtraining is if you start to feel constantly fatigued, have a decrease in strength or endurance, and experience a lack of motivation or interest in your workouts. Overtraining can also lead to injuries if you're not careful. It's important to listen to your body and take rest days when you need them.

However, I've also had moments where I wasn't pushing myself hard enough and I noticed that I wasn't seeing the progress I wanted. In this case, it's important to challenge yourself in your workouts and try to increase the weight, intensity, or reps of your exercises. It's also helpful to set specific goals for yourself and track your progress.

At the end of the day, finding the right balance can be tricky and it's okay to experiment with different workout routines and schedules until you find what works best for you. Just remember to always listen to your body, pay attention to any signs of overtraining or underperformance, and make adjustments as needed. Hope this helps!

deckow.idell

Hi there,

I've been working out for a few years now and have definitely gone through periods of overtraining and not pushing myself hard enough. One way to check if you're pushing yourself hard enough is to monitor your heart rate during your exercise. Using a heart rate monitor can help you gauge if you're working out hard enough, but not pushing yourself excessively. Another method is by checking if you're experiencing muscular fatigue towards the end of your sets.

On the other hand, signs of overtraining can be lower motivation and increased irritability. Feeling exhausted as soon as you start to exercise can also be a sign of overtraining. For example, if you can only do one or two reps, and your muscles feel more strained than usual when you're working out, that's a sign that you're overdoing it.

It's important to find that sweet spot and increase your workouts at a gradual pace, respecting both your mind and body. Also, take the proper recovery time to allow your muscles to rest and repair themselves. It can take time to get used to working out, and the aim should not be about comparing ourselves with others but improving where we are now.

At the end of the day, staying fit is a journey, and finding the balance between reaching your goals without injuring yourself while maintain your fitness level is key.

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