Over Training? What are the clues?

  • misterduck

    Posts: 32

    Jul 28, 2008 2:34 PM GMT
    Man oh man, I have been bustin' my ass @ the gym lately and it seems like my muscles are just NOT growin' what so ever. I keep reading things that suggest you should work out muscle groups sometimes twice a week and then other things that suggest only once a week.

    I do the following:

    Monday: Shoulders
    Tuesday: Back
    Wednesday: Legs
    Thursday: Chest
    Friday: Arms

    I do a 6 week routine, take a week off from lifting and then start another 6 week routine.

    I'm interested in switchin' it up some here and maybe doing one exercise for another muscle group on "off" days but I am concerned about over training. What are the clues to realize if you're over training? What does that mean exactly? Will I loose muscle mass if I over train? It's so frustrating.

    Any one have any thoughts or experince with this happening to them?

    Thanks!
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    Jul 28, 2008 3:40 PM GMT
    Loss of appetite, feeling tired, easy to get irritable, difficulty in sleeping,weight loss are some common signs of over training. You could try resting on Wednesday and train Saturday this way you give your body time to recover from busting your ass @the gym, you only grow when at rest. Try not to train more then 60 minutes after that your body starts ramping up cortisol.
  • TexanMan82

    Posts: 893

    Jul 28, 2008 4:20 PM GMT
    I seriously doubt you are overtraining. You have to workout pretty hardcore for a while to be in danger of it.

    Why don't you post your usual routine for some constructive criticism.

    What's your diet like?
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    Jul 28, 2008 6:53 PM GMT
    How long have you been sticking to the same exercises?

    It could be that while you're upping your weight on your lifts, your muscles are so used to performing that function that they arn't having to adapt and grow anymore.
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    Jul 28, 2008 6:59 PM GMT
    misterduck, i have the exact same problem!! i look forward to hearing some of the suggestions from other members. thanks for posting this.
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    Jul 28, 2008 7:02 PM GMT
    As Gwgtrunks suggested, if you're performing the same exercises every six weeks, you're muscles are going to get use to the movement. Try different angles (decline, incline, toes pointing in/out), different grips (reverse) push/pull exercises. Don't get trapped into what you know. Bodybuilding.com has some great exercise ideas as well!
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    Jul 28, 2008 7:04 PM GMT
    misterduck saidWhat are the clues to realize if you're over training?

    I am sure I wouldnt know! ... icon_lol.gif ... oh i crack me up!
  • misterduck

    Posts: 32

    Jul 28, 2008 8:25 PM GMT
    Every 6 weeks, I take a week off of lifting and then totally start a new routine with different types of exercises. Also after three weeks into the routine, I do the routine backwards so that I'm always switching it around and trying to "shock" my muscles. It's really frustrating though!

    Last week I started doing pull-up and chin-ups every other day and also doing push-ups to exhaustion. It seemed like when I went to the chest workout later in the week it was slightly easier.

    I haven't been doing any kind of protein shake or anything like that and I'm thinkin' maybe I should add that as well.

    I want to bulk up more and also loose some weight, but I am concerned that I just might be overtraining.

    ARGH! It's all genetics I think! icon_smile.gif
  • misterduck

    Posts: 32

    Jul 28, 2008 8:27 PM GMT
    sluggo_la saidmisterduck, i have the exact same problem!! i look forward to hearing some of the suggestions from other members. thanks for posting this.


    WOW! If I looked like you I wouldn't be posting! LOL! You have an AMAZING body, how is it that you're having the same problem as me? LOL! icon_smile.gif
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    Sep 21, 2008 8:29 PM GMT
    Frederick Hatfield recommends blood pressure and resting heart rate, among other things in his book "Hardcore Bodybuilding, A Scientific Approach" as overtraining indicators and I have used these two methods with great success. By success I mean that I can train hard 7 days a week for months on end, only pulling back enough to keep these parameters within range and make continuous progress (as measured by arm size). If you exceed the limit it doesn't mean you are over trained just that you are heading in that direction and immediate action is required.

    The procedure:
    Go get one of those wrist cuff blood pressure & heart rate monitors (Walmart has them fairly cheap) and put it on your night stand. When you first wake up, before you move around and get things stirring take a measurement. NOTE: you need to be consistent on how you measure and I recommend that you have the monitor at the same level as your heart.

    Finding your Baseline:
    First you will need to find your baseline measurement. When you are taking your week off from training would be an ideal time to do this. Take these measurements every morning and record them. I record mine in Excel so that I can easily graph them over time. Look at the data and decide if you need to throw any points out. For example, a bad night's sleep will increase your morning heart rate so throw that point out, etc..

    Setting Limits:
    Hatfield divides overtraining into two categories: Addisonic and Basdowic because the overtraining symptoms are similar to Addison’s and Basdow's diseases respectively.

    For heart rate, measured in beats per minute, I set my limits at 15%. Above 15% indicates Basdowic overtraining while below 15% indicates Addisonic overtraining. If you change the amount of cardio that you do you may have to reevaluate your baseline occasionally - I have only had to do that once because it stays fairly constant. So in summary: for heart rate you want to keep it BETWEEN these limits.

    For blood pressure you will want to stay BELOW the limits. You have two numbers in your blood pressure: the systolic (top) and the diastolic (bottom) and they are measured in mmHg (millimeters of mercury) I set my morning limits at +20% for both systolic and diastolic pressures; exceeding either of these indicates Basdowic overtraining. I also set a post training limit of +15% of my diastolic (measured right after training) or 100, which ever number is lower; exceeding this limit indicates Addisonic overtraining.

    My Experience:
    I tend to fall out on the Basdowic side of overtraining probably 75% of the time and I think that heart rate is the best indicator. It usually gives me the earliest warning.

    You need to watch your diet carefully too as not taking in sufficient calories can put you into an over trained state fairly quick. the trick here is to know if you need to back off of the physical activity or increase your calories - assuming you are eating well it means back off the training – i.e. go walk laps for a day.

    On that note: I follow Gerard Dente's Macrobolic Nutrition guide from which I calculate my total number of calories for my stated goal (gain, lose, or maintain). He specifies a weight percent of 35-45-20 of protein, carbs, and fat respectively as a balanced meal. Given this, I know my food intake is good so I automatically know that I have to pull back on activity. Legs are usually a real killer for me and most of the time that I either start drifting toward a limit or actually exceed one it's frequently a day or two after hitting legs hard.

    Yes, it's a bit technical, but it does draw a very distinct line in the sand that allows you to push to your limits - which is what I like to do. Hope this was helpful.
  • Hunkymonkey

    Posts: 215

    Sep 23, 2008 7:13 AM GMT
    extreme muscle soreness that lasts more than a couple of days. inability to get out of bed the morning following an overtraining. listlessness and lack of energy.