Exercising is a necessary (and enjoyable) part of living a healthy life. But just like anything else, too much of a good thing isn’t necessarily better.
Adding exercise to your routine should be a complementary aspect of your daily life, not a ball and chain. But knowing how much exercise is the right amount for you and your body can be tricky. Thankfully, the body does offer us some clues.
Here are a few ways to tell if you’re overdoing it with your exercise regimen and it’s time to slow down.
Ways Your Body Tells You it’s Time to Slow Down
- Taking a “rest day” seems impossible.
If you’re someone who can’t live without your daily hard and fast-paced workouts, it might be time to balance your intense workouts with slower-paced exercises throughout the week. Try adding yoga or getting out into nature to take a brisk walk to let your body repair.
- The gym is starting to feel like a punishment.
If you normally look forward to going to the gym and are now finding yourself making excuses for going, you may be in a workout rut which might signal that you are over-exercising. You can judge your motivation level by the exhaustion level your body is feeling.
- You feel under the weather or are getting sick more often.
Most people would think that exercising as much as possible helps to strengthen their immunity and keep them healthy. But, if you are doing more than 90-minutes of high-intensity exercise daily, you could actually be reducing your immunity. The added wear and tear on your body depletes your resources and could make you more prone to illnesses. If you are experiencing mild illnesses more often, consider how strenuous your workout schedule is.
- You’re tired, but still can’t sleep.
If you fall into bed exhausted but can’t relax and go to sleep, your body could be too tired. Or, if you fall asleep quickly but then wake up in the early hours of the morning, it could be a sign of too much invigorating exercise. Instead of getting that much-needed rest, it results in disrupted sleep patterns.
- Your mood is unpredictable.
Exercising can become an addiction and moods including depression, anxiety, anger, confusion, and irritability can happen when you overtax your body on a continual basis. Emotional stress hormones are also released when you physically push your body too much.
- Life feels heavy.
Feeling like even normal everyday tasks are an effort is a sign that you’re working your body too hard. If carrying groceries from the car, lifting a child, or walking up a stairway causes a feeling of heaviness, then that might be a sign to take a few days off from the gym in order to recover and get some good sleep.