Kathryn Oats - Physiotherapist at Lime Physical Therapy
| Jan 13, 2015
Following the festive season it is common for many of us to make New Year’s resolutions and get stuck into a highly vigorous exercise program to shed those Christmas kilos! However it is important that all training commences gradually and is carefully progressed to ensure that injury and overtraining does not occur. We thought this time of the year it may be worth mentioning overtraining and some tips on how to avoid it.
Get Active’s tips on Avoiding Overtraining:
- The actual recovery time needed between exercise bouts is usually longer than you think and is effected by such factors as the intensity of your exercise session, your nutrition, quality of sleep and overall stress levels – so if in doubt have an extra days’ break between sessions or go for a gentle walk instead of a hard session in the gym.
- Hold off on those split routines and multi-exercises per body part routines until you see your results plateau and certainly wait for well over 12 months before even contemplating these more advanced programs – all trainers will say that their best ever gains came from their full body routine done 2-3 times a week on non consecutive days.
- Resist the temptation to do your weight training on consecutive days (even if you are on a split routine) – there is a lot of benefit to be had from following a simple full body weight training program done on say Monday / Wednesday / Friday.
- If you do eventually move to a split routine then a great place to start is with the classic “Push /Pull” split of Chest/Shoulders/Triceps in Session A (the pushing day) and Legs/ Back/ Biceps in Session B (the pulling day) - but still only do this routine on non consecutive days.
Mix up your training days, exercises, training times and even gyms – variety is one of the keys to success in resistance training and can assist in keeping you fresh and out of the dreaded “over-trained state”.
Symptoms of Overtraining:
- general lethargy and lack of training motivation
- loss of strength and exercise performance
- loss of appetite and libido
- chronic joint aches and pains
- irritability and tiredness
So ease yourself into the New Year and mix up training with days of rest and varied activities. Consult your local physio if you have any injury concerns and sometimes getting a personal trainer to guide you through the start of a training programme is a great investment.