While it’s very beneficial to work out and train regularly, over training can adversely affect the body. So the question is, how do you regulate your workouts? How do you know if you’re being too hard on yourself?

Contrary to popular belief, over training actually happens. There is every likelihood that you can train so hard till your body breaks down. However, most people never get to this stage (where they break down physically). Over training is much more than experiencing muscle soreness or having few bad days in the gym.

If you’re over training during work outs, you may experience some of the symptoms below:

  • A sudden rise in resting heart rate and blood pressure
  • Symptoms of insomnia and sleeping difficulty.
  • Stomach upset
  • Constant low energy and bad mood
  • Gradual changes in mood and personality
  • Low self-esteem
  • Feelings of unhappiness and apathy

A research from the University of Memphis reveals that people who over-train will experience symptoms that are similar to depression and chronic fatigue. Also, a research published in the Journal of Athletic Training has revealed that when over training is extreme, your immune system may stop abruptly, leading to several issues like upper respiratory infections and slow healing. In order to avoid such health complications, you need to know the difference between intensity and insanity in training. If you’re looking for tips to help you avoid over training, Mike Robertson has the answers you seek. Mike is one of the best strength coaches in the U.S and he has created a variety of ways with which you can evaluate the intensity of your workouts.

The different options include:

Option 1: A self-analysis technique called RPR/RPE, or ‘rate of perceived recovery' and ‘rate of perceived exertion. The RPR scale describes how you feel before coming into a training session — the amount of sleep you got, how exhausted you feel, etc.

The RPE determines how heavy or difficult things feel immediately you start working out. Mike’s post, clearly evaluates this by regularly asking clients questions about how they feel about each move during the workout. Let’s take a look at an example:

  • RPE of 10 – Maximum effort/limit lift. This is either a massive grinder, or they entirely miss a lift.
  • RPE of 9 – Heavy lift with just one rep left in the tank.
  • RPE of 8 – Heavy lifting with two reps left in the tank.
  • RPE of 7 – Moderate weight with plenty reps left in the tank

Option 2: Let’s just assume you don’t have enough confidence to make subjective measurements. You just want data and information. Well, you can use certain tests to add a few numbers to your physical readiness.

For instance, the vertical jump accurately predicts how tired or exhausted you are. If you work out in a gym where there are jump height sticks, you can use that as a self-assessment tool. Do a few jumps before your workout or after your warm-up. If you discover that you are at, or above, your normal total, then you’re likely good to go. If the results turn out to be lower, then you’re more exhausted than you think and you need to take it easy on yourself.

Option 3: If jumping is not your thing but you still want to get data, there’s no problem. Another way to test your preparedness is by using a simple hand dynamometer (a tool that measures hand strength). Some many studies reveal that hand strength is a strong indicator of strength on any given day. If you squeeze and the results turn out to be low, then you need to take a rest because it clearly means you’re fatigued.


How To Put All These Options To Use

When you visit to the gym and begin your workout session (not your warmup), take a break and evaluate how you feel. The weight on the bar might be identical to that of the previous workouts, but you may feel a little bit different. This is a sign firm your body yo help you make the most of your session.

Rather than sticking to your original plan, if the weight feels a little bit ‘heavier' than it should and you’re tired, you can still  have a great workout session without bringing a lot of stress upon yourself. That’s how you take control and avoid over training.

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