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Over Training Syndrome

Timeless Fitness Tip

Did you know that hard training breaks you down and makes you weaker instead of stronger? It is the rest you get after hard training that makes you stronger! The "overtraining syndrome" is the name given to the collection of emotional, behavioral, and physical symptoms due to overtraining that has persisted for weeks to months.

Man with over training syndrome

Over-training syndrome is characterized by detectable symptoms. Most athletes and coaches first suspect over-training when performance begins to decline for no apparent reason. The most common physical symptom is fatigue.

Someone who is just beginning an exercise routine can suffer the same symptoms if they've pushed their body too far, too fast.

Fatigue, apathy, depression, muscle and joint pain and loss of appetite are common. Other symptoms include changes in heart rate at rest and during exercise, gastrointestinal disturbances, more frequent illnesses and infections, delayed healing of wounds and difficulty sleeping. Women may experience changes in their menstrual cycles.

To avoid over-training, vary your exercise program and include adequate time for recovery, especially after hard workouts. Also follow a healthy lifestyle and listen to your body.

What is the Treatment?

The treatment for the overtraining syndrome is rest. The longer the overtraining has occurred, the more rest required.

In more severe cases, a training program may have to be interrupted for weeks, and it could easily take months to recover. An alternate form of exercise can be substituted to help prevent exercise withdrawal.

As with almost everything else health related, prevention is the key.

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