Looking at the whole picture.
“Should I workout more?” is a question I get often. My answer…..it depends. We need to take a step back and look at our health and wellness as a whole.
How much sleep are you getting? Is your nutrition dialed in? Stress levels at work/home? Are you stretching or focusing on recovery? These things all take a toll on our body and its ability to recover if we aren’t managing them well. Adding MORE stress by working out more isn’t always the answer.
How often should I workout?
For the average person, we recommend 3 days/week. That doesn’t mean sitting around the other 4 days! Be active, walk, hike, play sports. But, as far as getting into the gym and crushing some weights, 3 days is a good place to start.
This allows your body to really recovery from the volume of work we are doing in class. Recovery is the key to seeing results and getting stronger!
If you are able to get at least 7 hours of sleep/night, dialed in on nutrition, and overall feel stress free, then we can throw in a 4th day.
Ready for a 5th day? You’ll need to start adding in recovery modalities a few days a week to keep your body from falling apart! Yoga, mobility, sauna/ice baths, massage therapy, and ART are all great tools to help you recovery from all that working out!
Signs of overtraining.
Notice I didn’t get into the 6 or 7 days of training above. With the exception of CrossFit Games athletes, no one really needs to or benefits much from working out that often. Working out and movement are two different things here. We encourage movement EVERYDAY.
Here are some common signs of overtraining:
- Low energy. Workouts are tough, as they should be! The funny thing is after we finish them we get a BURST of energy (once we peel ourselves off the floor lol). If you are overtraining, your body will feel run down and tired all the time. Always beat up. Never those euphoric post workout feels.
- Getting sick often. This can be a major sign of over exerting ourselves. Too much stress can lower your immune system instead of bolstering it like a balanced workout scheduled should do.
- Injuries. Let’s face it, injuries happen. When you are going hard every day without allowing proper recovery, they are MUCH more likely to happen.
- Results plateau. You gotta put in the work, and then spend time recovering properly to reap the rewards of that work! Sometimes we see athletes go on a week vacation, come back to the gym, and CRUSH workouts/lifts. That week off after months of hard training was exactly what they needed.
- Lack of motivation. Grinding every single day will wear on you. Taking days away from the gym to enjoy the fitness you’ve gained is key to staying motivated and in love with CrossFit or whatever fitness program you are following. Go for a hike, snowboard, kayak, or something else to still be active without being in the gym.
Staying Healthy and Happy
Overall, working out is just a small part of the equation to staying healthy and happy. At Revelry CrossFit we use the SEMM (Sleep, Eat, Move, Manage stress) model to figure out the best path forward for each member. Looking at what we need right now and adjusting as our lives change to continue to feel good, look good, and crush workouts for years and years to come.