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Train insane or remain the SAME?? You see these type of qoutes floating around alot; ''train HARD'' = get lean and get more muscles. Unfortunately some people can over-do this method, and it can have a reverse effect (I've made this mistake many times throughout my Health & Fitness journey, and it has been one of the barriers to achieving any results or goals I have set myself to achieve).

Chronic over-training can signal the storage of fat. It not only can be telling your body to store fat, but it can also be storing the fat at your waist-line.

Lets remember, physical training is a form of ''stress'' that is applied onto the body. During stress, your body releases a hormone called cortisol (a glucocorticoid from the adrenal gland). Cortisol’s primary function is to release glucose (insulin) into the blood at times of acute stress. So, the more stress you place on your body, the more cortisol is released.

Chronic stress (overtraining) results in an excess of cortisol, which will cause higher baseline cortisol levels. This excess keeps the body with high insulin levels, which blocks fat metabolism, and sends fat into storage at the waist. Excess cortisol also breaks down muscle tissue, and suppresses immune defenses, which is the opposite effect we are looking for (getting fat, weak and sick is not really ideal).

Cortisol levels rise with exercise but should decrease to a normal range with adequate recovery (rest days) . Often, the problem is that people today are becoming so desperate and hungry for results we aren't giving our bodies the proper recovery time.

Eg; My training program is always played by how I am feeling- If I feel like shit, then its a pretty good sign my body needs to rest (sometimes it may take me 1 day or I could even have up to 3 to 5 days off, just depends on how I am feeling mentally and physically).

Keep in mind there are other factors that can influence our stress levels. Stress from studies, a job, relationships, lack of sleep, and inadequate nutrition can add to the stress of intense training that the you go through each day.

If you are training hard and cannot seem to be seeing any results, the chances are that your cortisol levels are elevated are extremely high.

Here are some signs of over-training:

  • insomnia

  • decrease in appetite

  • decrease in performance

  • loss of coordination

  • prolonged recovery

  • increase in muscle soreness

  • loss of body weight

  • elevated heart rate

  • chronic fatigue

  • decreased motivation

  • decreases immune system (increase in infections, colds, etc).

Remember, 'Train 'SMARTER' - not 'HARDER'!!

If you have any questions in regards to todays blog, please feel free to give me a buzz via the 'Soul Fit Training & Mentoring' facebook page.

Kind regards


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