Overtraining?

March 30, 2009 at 10:06 pm 6 comments

I’ve been feeling really tired lately, sometimes even practically falling asleep at work. It’s hard to know what the exact cause is as there are a number of possibilities, but one that occurred to me was that I might be overtraining. But for the first time, I am enjoying exercise. I’ve been doing it because it’s fun, not out of any other driving motivation. Other possibilities include coming down with something, general stress levels, or poor quality sleep at night. I have been having nightmares and waking up feeling unrested most days for the last week or so, so that could also be to blame. There is a pretty good guide to overtraining on about.com, explaining what it is, how to tell if you have it, and what to do about it.

I have taken a few days off lifting but am still very tired. I have also been suffering from headaches and am sleeping a lot. As a result, I am not necessarily eating three proper meals a day, so am not getting all my nutrients in. I may start drinking a protein meal replacement shake in the evening if I don’t feel like a meal. I am also going to start meditating. I learned how to do TM a few years back, but have fallen out of the habit. So, additional goal for this week: 20 mins TM everyday, and see how I get on. I have had to make a decision on my already overdue weights and intervals from BFS. But it is late (gone 11pm). I think I will have today off completely, go and get my protein shake, and go to bed. After meditating.

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Entry filed under: Body Fat Solution, exercise, heath and fitness, motivation, weight loss.

No more good days and bad days – or it’s not about the goujons! Why did nobody tell me I’d get strong??

6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Cynthia  |  March 31, 2009 at 12:33 am

    It could be overtraining… but it could also be symptoms of fat loss! Or a combination of a little of both!

    Check out this article: http://avidityfitness.net/2009/02/20/symptoms-of-fat-loss/

    I can speak to the symptoms of fat loss, remember back in fall when I was doing Leigh’s challenge? I was exercising too much for the deficit she had us on and I got tired, slept more, had massive headaches. I also got very grumpy. And felt cold a lot, more than normal. All these symptoms eased once I was off the challenge and on a slightly milder deficit.

    So… first things first. Doesn’t WW allow for extra points for exercise? HAVE YOU BEEN EATING THEM? If not, start.

    Absolutely get your three meals in, even if you have to make a shake in the evening. PN style super shakes can be a good answer to get in a nice batch of good nutrition! I made one today with chocolate protein powder, flax meal, almond milk, PB, spinach, pumpkin and cinnamon. Delicious, very filling and hubby proclaimed it as GLUNK when he saw it, LOL!

    If the nutrition is there and you are eating all you are supposed to, then you might consider backing off a little on your exercise or intensity of same and see if your symptoms ease any. I don’t think you should stop though if you are enjoying it.

    Feel better!

    Reply
    • 2. blubberbegone  |  March 31, 2009 at 7:17 pm

      Hi Cyn,

      That’s a really interesting post by Leigh Peele, but I am none the wiser as to whether I am overtraining/under-eating or simply losing fat. To be honest, I found it hard to be believe that it was the former because I am (or was, before this started) eating really well and enjoying my exercise which was averaging between 5.5 and 6.5 hours per week. I just couldn’t think what else it could be. The option that I am simply experience the deficit that leads to fat loss is both reassuring and comforting, but what do I do about it?

      I HAVE backed off the exercise and done nothing for several days now, and I don’t feel any better or more rested, so the fat-loss explanation may be the answer. Does that mean I can’t change it? Should I choose to stop losing fat for a while and start eating more to induce my own plateau? I am eating three healthy, filling, nutritious meals a day plus snacks at the moment so I’m not even sure how I would do that except by picking less healthy caloric options, and, amazingly, this is not something I feel I want to do. I’m enjoying eating more nutritious food and have largely gone off the idea of eating junk.

      Having said that, we had friends for dinner Friday night and cooked three curries (one of them creamy), with rice, home-made naan, poppadoms to start, kulfi (Indian ice cream) for dessert, and a couple of glasses of wine. On Saturday, after my friend and I got back from our fitness convention and were too tired to even go change our clothes to go out for dinner, we ordered Chinese, and I had my favourite, crispy (yes, battered and deep fried) chili beef. So if that calorie fest didn’t make me feel better, I’m not sure what will.

      By the way, I am not following WW and haven’t been for probably nearly a year. I am doing my own ‘eat healthier’ plan, and it seems to be working for me. At least, I am losing weight on it, and had been feeling fantastic up until the last week or so. I don’t feel ill and don’t seem to be sickening. I’m at a bit of a loss.

  • 3. blubberbegone  |  March 31, 2009 at 7:31 pm

    By the way, I haven’t done any high intensity training since last Tuesday (intervals) or Wednesday (weights), so it’s nearly a week now since I’ve done my BFS workouts. I’m gonna have a go at getting back in the saddle this evening and see how I get on.

    Reply
  • 4. Cynthia  |  March 31, 2009 at 8:27 pm

    I gave you the link so that you’d see a different perspective on it. But whether what you are feeling is fat loss, overtraining, or something else, I don’t know. I’d forgotten you’d gone off WW, sorry!

    Your losses have been reasonable, and if you are enjoying healthier food, and losing weight, then it doesn’t seem to me like you should change up your eating either. Plus, if you have the occasional calorie fest, then you are giving your body a break from the constant deficit and that’s good.

    Maybe you just aren’t getting the quality sleep you need. That could be the culprit too. I’m not a good person to ask though, as I rarely have nightmares and tend to sleep like a log.

    I wish I knew what to say! Maybe it is just a phase and will go away. I had a thing when I was just out of high school where I just started feeling utterly exhausted and couldn’t do anything, but wake up, barely manage my part time job, come home and sleep. I hardly ate, just slept, worked, slept again. Parents took me to the doctor who could find nothing wrong. I was like that for a month (lost a good 10 pounds) and then started feeling better again and went back to normal. Never did find out what was wrong and it never happened again.

    If it keeps up, then you might want to see your doctor or possibly consult a sleep specialist.

    Reply
  • 5. Cynthia  |  March 31, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    Oh, something else I have occasionally heard is that when we are losing fat, we are also releasing some toxins that are stored in the fat in our bodies and that can affect us by some crappy physical feelings. So that might be another potential cause.

    I know it all has to be frustrating! Hang in there!

    The meditation thing sounds like a good idea, perhaps that will help with the sleep as well.

    Reply
  • 6. blubberbegone  |  March 31, 2009 at 8:43 pm

    Hi Cyn,

    Thanks for all the good suggestions and advice, but mostly for the moral support.

    Have been procrastinating for about an hour now. Off to do my workout.

    Reply

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Blubberbegone Stats

  • Start: 16 stone, 45.7% body fat
  • Goal: 10 stone, 20% body fat
  • Today: 14 stone 13.6 lbs, 44.8% BF
  • Pounds lost: 14.4
  • Body fat lost: 0.9%
  • Exercise this week (Sat–Fri):
  • Total: 2 hr 5 mins
  • Jog/Walk: 20 mins
  • Walking: 20 mins
  • Burlesque: 1 hr
  • Pilates: 25 mins
  • African dance: mins
  • Tae Kwon Do: mins
  • Badminton: mins
  • Tai Chi: mins
  • Yoga: hr
  • Exercise last week: 4 hrs 40 mins
  • Joke of the Day

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    Motivation

    My Weight Loss Goals

  • 1. Crack 15 stone (210 lbs) for the fourth and final (I hope) time.
  • 2. Lose 10% of my body fat (14 stone 4).
  • 3. Fit into a size 18 (US 16).
  • 4. Get my body fat below 40%
  • 5. Lose another 10% of my body fat (12 stone 12/180 lbs).
  • 6. Get my BMI under 30 (12 stone 9/177 lbs) - no longer obese, just overweight now.
  • 7. Weigh less than my husband.
  • 8. Fit into a size 16 (US 14).
  • 9. Lose my third 10% (11 stone 8/162 lbs).
  • 10. Fit into a size 14 (US 12).
  • 11. Get my BMI under 25 (10 stone 8/148 lbs).
  • 12. Lose my fourth 10% (10 stone 6/ 146 lbs).
  • 13. Fit into a size 12 (US 10).
  • 14. Reach my goal weight (10 stone) and decide if I need to lose any more based on my muscularity and shape.
  • 15. Turn heads in a bikini!
  • My Fitness Goals for 2011

  • 1. Increase my cruising walking speed from around 5.0kph to 6.4kph.
  • 2. Increase continuous jogging time to 30 mins.
  • 3. Run a 5K for charity.
  • 4. Work on my crawl stroke and build up to 30 mins continuous swimming.
  • 5. Build up to 1 hour continuous and comfortable cycling.
  • 6. Squat 50kg.
  • 7. Do an unassisted chin up.
  • 8. Take a martial arts or self-defence class for at least 3 months.
  • 9. Beat my husband at badminton.
  • 10. Learn a new dance style.
  • My Blubber Reduction Journey

  • My highest measured weight ever:
  • Jan 1 2006 = 238 lbs (17 stone)
  • BBG blog starting weight:
  • Sep 16 2007 = 215.5 lbs (15 stone 5.5), 47.0% BF Lean body mass 114.2 lbs (8 stone 2.2)
  • Highest weight posted since then:
  • Xmas 2008 = 223.6 lbs (15 stone 13.6), 48.2% BF, lean body mass 116.0 lbs (8 stone 4)
  • Lowest weight posted since then:
  • Nov 16 2009 = 193.2 lbs (13 stone 11.2), 43.7% BF, lean body mass 108.8 lbs (7 stone 10.8)
  • Lowest body fat posted since then:
  • Sep 7 2009 = 194.2 lbs (13 stone 12.2), 42.6% BF, lean body mass 111.5 lbs (7 stone 13.5)
  • My blubber reduction journey 2011:
  • Xmas 2010 = 221.6 lbs, 46.7% BF, 118.1 lbs LBM
  • 5 Jan = 221.0 lbs, 47.1% BF
  • 12 Jan = 219.6 lbs, 45.8% BF
  • 19 Jan = 220.4 lbs, 45.8% BF (TTOM)
  • 26 Jan = 218.8 lbs, 45.2% BF
  • 2 Feb = 218.8 lbs, 44.7% BF
  • 9 Feb = 219.4 lbs, 44.9% BF
  • 16 Feb = 215.8 lbs, 44.6% BF
  • 23 Feb = 213.2 lbs, 45.2% BF
  • 2 Mar = 211.6 lbs, 45.9% BF
  • 9 Mar = 209.8 lbs, 45.1% BF
  • 16 Mar = 208.8 lbs, 45.3% BF
  • 23 Mar = 208.0 lbs, 45.1% BF
  • 13 Apr = 208.4 lbs, 44.4% BF
  • 20 Apr = 207.6 lbs, 43.3% BF
  • 27 Apr = 205.0 lbs, 45.8% BF
  • 4 May = 209.2 lbs, 45.2% BF (TTOM)
  • No. weeks: 18
  • Average weekly weight loss: 0.31%
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