MetCon – 4 Rounds for Time:
10 Power Cleans (135/95lbs)
Finisher: 4 min plank
Overtraining and Rest Days
It was a great epiphany in my Crossfit experience when I finally understood the full importance of rest days.
I used to feel exceptionally guilty if I missed a day of training. In my mind, all the gains I had made in the past 3 months were probably lost on that one day of inactivity. In reality, gains are made from adaptations the body makes in response to stimulus (physical activity) and this can only occur during resting and rebuilding (days off, active recovery, sleep).
There are a couple of factors that play into this adaptaion:
1) Genetics – simply put, some people have the capability to train harder, faster, and more often without overtraining
2) Nutrition – Not to over-harp on super strict paleo, but generally speaking, the cleaner one eats, the better their recovery
3) Age and previous experience – Obviously a 22 year old ex-college athlete can recover faster than a 52 year old never-been-athlete.
Scheduled rest days are one thing (I’m a big fan of 3/1 + 2/1 on/off every week) but sometimes, you hit the gym and for whatever reason, it’s not happening today. There is no shame in (with proper knowledge of when this applies) taking it easier that day, or even just going home and skipping entirely. If your training is going to be half-assed that day due to fatigue, and you feel overtrained in the first place, working out that day is going to do more harm than good.
Some simple signs of overtraining:
– Pain in muscles and joints (that isn’t normal for you)
– Progressively later getting to sleep/insomnia
– Decreased immunity/increased sickness
– Decrease in performance/training capacity
– Loss of appetite
– General loss of enthusiasm for activity
If you feel like you’re overtrained, or more appropriately put: under-recovered, talk to one of your coaches about it. Grant isn’t the brightest, but you can probably find someone else to help you figure out what’s buggin ya…
talk to Grant …
P.S. One of the best ways I personally have found to combat overtraining – every 6 weeks or so I take 3-4 days off in a row. I always feel like a lazy sack doing it, but I almost always come back feeling stronger and fresher than ever.