There is a reason the saying goes, “Too much of a good thing is bad.” This rings true even when it comes to something so great for your body like exercise. While chasing personal fitness goal – I too have been guilty of over training.

So, how do you know you may be over training? An obvious sign is feeling fatigue/tiredness all the time. With excessive exercise comes aches and pains due to muscles, bones and joints being overworked. In the time I was over training, I felt just this – it was like I had lost all my fitness and strength. I struggled to get through workouts that in previous occasions would be manageable.

Here are some other tell-tale signs you’re pushing yourself too hard according to the American Council on Exercise (ACE)…

Decreased performance. Slower reaction times, reduced speeds and lowered endurance levels are all common signs of over training.

Agitation, moodiness, irritability or lack of concentration. Too much exercise and too little rest can wreak havoc on the hormones and cause mood swings and an inability to concentrate.

Excessive fatigue. A body that never has a chance to fully recover from a previous workout will continue to feel more and more fatigued. Some people describe this feeling as “heavy legs.”

Increased perceived effort during normal workouts. Over training takes a toll on the body, and workouts that were once a breeze can begin to feel like a grind.

Chronic or nagging muscle aches or joint pain. Overused muscles and joints can cause constant aches, which may go unnoticed until the body is given proper rest.


More frequent illnesses and upper-respiratory infections. Too much exercise taxes all of the body’s systems and makes it more difficult to ward off infections.

Insomnia or restless sleep. During sleep the body has time to rest and repair itself. An over-trained body, however, is sometimes unable to slow down and completely relax, making it difficult to recover between workouts.

Loss of appetite. Over training can cause an increase in hormones such as epinephrine and norepinephrine that tend to inhibit appetite. The physical exhaustion and anxiety that often comes with over training can also have the same effect.

Chronically elevated heart rate at rest and during exercise. A clear sign of an overworked heart muscle is a chronically elevated heart rate. Also, people who over-train will often find that it takes longer for their heart rate to return to normal after a workout.

Menstrual cycle disturbances in women. Exercising excessively and not consuming enough calories may disrupt a woman’s menstrual cycle. While some may experience irregular periods, others will stop menstruating altogether.

Happy, Healthy, Fabulous

Photography : Hemisha Bhana