The benefits of regular exercise is a common conversation topic these days, but how many of us talk about over-exercising and its consequences? Yes, over-exercising is a condition and it can be harmful to the body.
Consequences of Over-Exercising
While exercising can benefit both physical and mental health in people of all ages, too much exercise can have a negative impact. Studies show that constantly over-working the body may release corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) and cortisol, two hormones linked to stress response.
An excess of CRH can make the walls of various organs like the lungs and intestines more permeable, allowing harmful substances to enter the organs, thus increasing the risk of developing health conditions.
Cortisol regulates functions like metabolism and an increase in its level can lead to a faster break down of muscles and ligaments. It may also impact digestion, bone health and immune functioning.
The natural level of cortisol in the body tends to increase with age and when combined with constant strenuous exercises, it can further increase the production of the hormone. This, in turn, can lead to problems like higher blood sugar levels and weight gain.
Other than increased levels of cortisol and CRH, research also shows that women who exercise vigorously and excessively have a more difficult time getting pregnant than those who follow more moderate routines.
So if you constantly feel fatigued, fall ill frequently and have trouble with sleep even though you follow a healthy lifestyle, it might be time to switch out your workout routine.
How to Not Over-Exercise
Though over-exercising can be a serious problem, it does have a solution. Experts believe that it might help to mix high-intensity interval training (HIIT) with milder forms of exercise like yoga or barre.
You could also incorporate aerobics and Zumba to your morning routine to get the heart pumping and then relax it with some gentle yoga and breathing techniques. Regardless of the routines you pick, make sure you give yourself at least a couple of rest days for optimum benefits. It is recommended, though, to incorporate at least a short walk into the rest days to keep the muscles active and ready for the next set of intense workouts.
As you work through different routines to find the one that suits you the best, make sure you stay hydrated, eat right and get the required amount of sleep to reap the complete benefits of the new exercise style you have chosen.
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Gottfried, S. (2017, April 23). How Much Should You Exercise To Maintain Weight Loss? Retrieved from https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-29900/how-much-should-you-exercise-to-maintain-weight-loss.html
Bows, D. (2017, June 30). When Over-Exercising Harms Your Health: Exactly What You Need To Know About Pushing Yourself Too Hard. Retrieved from https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/health-impacts-of-overexercising