Do you take rest days?
- Persistent muscle soreness – this is more than just a bit of soreness a few days after a hard session. This is constant muscle aching especially in your legs
- Depression or moodiness – you find your personality has changed a little and you feel “down” a lot. Training should uplift you with its amazing endorphins but you have the complete opposite
- Persistent fatigue – you feel tired all the time and just can’t seem to get enough sleep
- Insomnia – you are training everyday with not a lot of rest so you should be super tired and sleeping well but instead you find yourself lying awake at night
- Elevated resting heart rate – altered resting heart rate is the result of an increased metabolic rate to meet the imposed demand of the training.
- Lowered immune system – you find yourself getting sick quite regularly even though you eat really well
- Increased susceptibility to injuries – every time you get rid of a niggle another seems to pop up or you have a reoccurring injury every 4-6 weeks
- Decreased motivation – you want to train but just can’t seem to drag yourself out of bed when usually you’d leap out and be the first one knocking on the door
- Halted progress – your training has hit a plateau and your numbers haven’t moved in months.
If you answered yes to more than 3 of the above then you are overtraining.
Rest days are critical to performance for a variety of reasons. Some are physiological and some are psychological. Rest is physically necessary so that the muscles can repair, rebuild and strengthen. Programming in rest days can help maintain a better balance between home, work and fitness goals.
Originally published in our monthly newsletter August – 2014. Like what you are reading? Sign up for our newsletter at the top right of this page.