Working out is great for your mind, body, and soul. It can help improve your mood, increase your energy levels, and even help you live longer. But as with anything else, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Here are the signs that you might be pushing your body too hard:
You’re Injured More Often
If you’re always nursing a sore ankle, shoulder, or wrist, it’s a sign that your body can’t keep up with the demands you’re placing on it. This could mean that your activities are too intense or you’re not giving your body enough time to recover. Injuries should be taken seriously, so it’s time to reassess your routine if you notice a pattern.
What You Can Do: If you are dealing with more injuries, it might be time to take a break and reassess your goals. Cut back on the intensity or frequency of your workouts, talk to a trainer about proper form, and incorporate other activities like yoga or swimming into your routine for balance. Don’t push through an injury—that can worsen things and set you back even further.
You’ve Developed Obsessive Behaviors
If you find that working out is all you can think about, and you’re obsessively planning your workouts or skipping social engagements to fit them in, it might be time to take a step back.
Obsessive behaviors can signify that you’re placing too much importance on exercise and not enough on other aspects of your life. It could also signify that you’re exercising to cope with anxiety or stress. You may also be pressuring yourself to reach unrealistic goals.
What You Can Do: It’s important to remember that balance is key—your mental and emotional well-being should take priority over your workout routine. Make sure you’re taking breaks, scheduling leisure activities, and reaching out to friends for socialization. If needed, consider speaking to a therapist about your obsessive behaviors.
Check with yourself and be honest about why you’re pushing so hard. Talk to a therapist if your exercise habits are connected to underlying mental health issues or stress. Make sure you’re scheduling other activities into your day besides working out. Focus on consistency over intensity when it comes to your workouts. Exercise should make you feel good, not guilty.
Your Teeth Hurt
It may seem like an odd symptom, but it could signify that you’re clenching or grinding if your teeth hurt while working out. The tension and stress that comes with this intense exercise can manifest in your jaws.
What You Can Do: Pay attention to your body and movements while working out. Try to remain mindful of any clenching or grinding that might be happening. If it becomes a problem, consider talking to a physical therapist who can offer tips on relaxing your jaw muscles. Additionally, make sure to schedule a dentist appointment to check for any damage that might have occurred, like cracked teeth or worn enamel. Too much exertion can impact your dental health, so it’s important to check.
You Feel Exhausted All the Time
Feeling constantly tired—even after a full night’s sleep—could signal that you’re pushing yourself too hard. Working out is supposed to give you energy, not take it away. Exhaustion could be a sign that your body is not recovering properly between workouts, or it could result from overtraining. Or that you don’t enjoy your workouts anymore, and you’re forcing yourself to do them.
What You Can Do: Re-evaluate your fitness routine and make sure that it is something you enjoy doing. Cut back on the intensity or length of workouts if needed, and focus on taking rest days so your body can recover. Additionally, try incorporating other activities like yoga or stretching into your routine. You should also get enough sleep, eat nutritious foods, and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
You’ve Stopped Seeing Results
If you’re working out just as hard as you always have but have stopped seeing results—or worse, if you’ve started gaining weight—it might be a sign that you’re overdoing it. Your body needs time to recover between workouts; if you don’t give it that time, you won’t see the benefits of your efforts.
What You Can Do: Take a step back and look at your fitness routine—are you giving yourself enough rest days? Are you eating properly to fuel your workouts? Are you taking on too much intensity for your current level of fitness? Ensure you’re balanced in how often and intensely you work out and your activities. Resting gives your body time to repair, rebuild, and grow stronger.
Pushing your body too hard can lead to injuries, burnout, and other negative consequences. Pay attention to how your body feels during and after workouts; if something doesn’t feel right, take a step back and reassess things. You should always feel good after a workout—if you don’t, something isn’t right! Trust your gut and listen to what your body is telling you; chances are, it knows best.