Are You Exercising Too Much? The Do’s and Don’ts of Working Out
You’re excited about your new workout routine, and you’re hitting the gym hard. That’s great! Don’t lose steam, but at the same time, play it smart. You want to give yourself the stamina and tools to keep moving forward to see consistent progress without getting burnt out.
- Ease Into Endurance Workouts: Our bodies need time to adjust into our desired workouts. If you have a goal to run a 5k, then you won’t start out with a 2 mile run. You need time for your muscles and stamina to catch up to the amount of work your asking your body to do. If you rush into things before you’re ready, you’re bound to hurt yourself. Slow but steady is the best way to go.
- Eat Enough Good Food: A misconception is that the less you eat, the healthier you are. That’s not necessarily true. Food is our body’s source of energy. The more energy you expend, the more calories you need to consume to replenish your body’s resources. The trick comes in eating good food to have quality calories. Sugar and starches taste good, and will give you energy, but they aren’t as effective as proteins, fruits, and vegetables.
- Have A Recovery Routine: As your plan out your workout routine, build in purposeful rest days. Don’t do anything strenuous on those days to let your body repair. During exercise, your muscles slightly tear, which is one of the reasons you feel sore the next day. Your body needs time to repair the muscles, making them grow stronger.
- Replace Meals With Shakes: Shakes are a great way to supplement your diet, but they shouldn’t replace your normal meals. Our bodies are made to process solid foods, and going to a strict liquid diet can do more harm than good. Typically with shakes, people also dramatically cut the amount of calories that they eat. The average person needs about 1600 calories to stay alive while sitting on the sofa. If you are exercising, you’ll need more. You should never drop your caloric intake to less than 1800 calories. If you do, your body will think that you are starving, and it will protect you by putting weight on.
- Go To Failure All The Time: Going to failure means that you constantly go as heavy as possible. Doing this will tax your nervous system and make it difficult to continue exercising throughout the week. Yes, get heavy, but by doing a weight that you can sustain for multiple repetitions.
- Ignore Pain: Don’t push through pain. Our bodies are not invincible, and excess exercise can cause injuries from repetitive movements. If you have pain, wait a few days to give your body rest. If it doesn’t go away, then see a doctor.
Look up videos, talk to other experts, and attend classes to learn new techniques. If you’ve hit a plateau in your progress, then try introducing new exercises to your program. Keep steady, and you’ll see consistent growth month after month.