Ever have one of those days where you just couldn’t or didn’t want to get out of bed? If you exercise on a regular basis, how do you know if it is because you are over training or something else? And what should you do about it?
As I get older, I find it increasingly difficult to get motivated every time I exercise. After 42 years what gets me going is that it is such a natural habit for me, I just don’t feel right when I don’t train. But I have had those days where the body and/or mind just says No.
This feeling can be attributed to over training or just over coming what I call the ‘lazy syndrome’.
When people start an exercise regimen for the first time, they are real quick to use the excuse of over training to skip a workout or two or maybe more. Most work out partners I have had, will quickly jump to that line of reasoning. From personal experience I can tell you it takes A LOT to over train. The human body can tolerate a lot of punishment.
There are two types of over training. One is short in nature such as working out one body part so hard that you are still extremely sore three days later. Being sore a day or two later is ok but after 72 hours, chances are you really tore the muscles up pretty bad. This should not, however, keep you from training other body parts. Just because you over trained your chest, for example, has nothing to do with the rest of your body.
The other type of over training happens over an extended period of time. This is when you are constantly over loading the muscles across the entire body and is usually combined with lack of sleep and nutrition. You feel lethargic and just don’t want to train.
Other symptoms may include getting colds or flus easily because your immune system is down or being more prone to injury.
If you truly are over training, don’t stop cold turkey! Throttle your workouts back a whole bunch. If you were training 60-75 minutes a session, take it back to 30 minutes. If you were lifting x pounds cut it back by 40%, etc. The key is this, you don’t want to interrupt te HABIT of training on a CONSISTENT basis. Your body needs to be programmed to WANT to train several times a week. Skipping work outs deprograms the body.
The ‘lazy syndrome’ is all in the head, in my opinion. It is especially prevalent in those starting a training program for the first time in their lives or after an extended layoff.
Have you ever noticed how some people always find an excuse to NOT DO something and others always find an excuse TO DO something? Well skipping work outs due to being tired falls in the category of ‘NOT DO’ people. There simply is no excuse unless you have some kind of emergency.
What works best for me when I think I am tired is to go to the gym and just change the routine completely. Do circuit training, spin on a bike, hit the treadmill, do anything outside the norm. Also do it at an extremely light level. The key is to just get blood in the muscle. I cannot emphasize this enough. Don’t do the same ole thing, have FUN by trying something new. Do it for a few days until you get out of that funk.
Don’t worry about weights lifted, or stairs climbed or RPM’s on the bike. It doesn’t matter. The purpose here is to NOT BREAK A HABIT, of missing workouts. You have to program the brain that you are going to do it no matter what. Most people have programmed themselves to find a way NOT TO do something. You have to reprogram yourself TO DO something.
Exercise is not a race to see who gets healthy first. Exercising is like a marathon, it is a life event that will be part of you forever. It should be no different than eating and sleeping. It should be part of your routine.
Once you can over come one of those “I don’t want to train today” moments, you will see it wasn’t so bad and you felt better afterwards. No guilt trip.
When you don’t want to train, kick those thoughts out of your head, they don’t belong there. You have to establish a habit regardless of what your sub-conscious mind is trying to tell you.
Making a HABIT out of exercise is one way to stay…Fit Forlife