Fitness is one of the greatest and most important things in life. No matter what you are training for, it's rarely a bad thing. You're trying to make positive, healthy changes to your life after all, and that's hard to beat. One way it can have a negative impact on your life, however, is when things go a little too far. There's a huge number of risks that come from training too much, and here, we've put together some of the most common signs and symptoms of overtraining for you to keep an eye on.

Injuries, aches and pain

Man dealing with over training injury symptom

First up, the most common physical symptom that comes with overtraining is an injury. Not just obvious injuries either, but serious aches and pains are included in there. They are not good news, and they're far more common than most people tend to realise.

The most common reason for this type of issue is that when you’re training more than you should do, your body simply cannot handle the stress you’re putting on it. You aren’t getting adequate recovery time, and it's showing. You do damage to your muscles your joints, and just about everything else too. Both short term and long term, it’s a huge issue.

(Take a look here for what to do on your rest days. Hint: Take a day off!)

Plateaus or performance issues

Woman disappointed in her performance

Next up is performance issues. Overtraining doesn’t just stick to physical symptoms and injuries. Your performance and your progress both take a huge hit when you start to train more than you should do. Even undertraining is probably better for you than overtraining is, so take it easy.

As you overtrain, like in the point above, you don’t have the time for your body to make the adjustments that you need to see form all of your hard work. The result? Your body can't build that extra stamina or muscle, and it simply isn't ready to perform like you need or expect it too. It's counterproductive.

Fatigue, restlessness and irritability

Woman distressed in training

Moving onto the more mental aspects that too much exercise offers you, the biggest hit is in your energy and attitudes. When you're overtraining, the symptoms are doing harm to everywhere after all, and this is just as much at risk as your physical health is.

Fatigue is the most likely, due to you not getting enough rest because of how much stress you’re putting on your body. That comes from the point above. Other than that, you become restless and irritable as a result as well. You aren’t performing up to the standard you want, which is not good, and then you aren’t getting the rest you need either. That’s the perfect recipe for a bad attitude and the wrong headspace.

Lack of motivation

Woman laid on her couch

Finally, overtraining symptom number four on our list is how your motivation takes a dive. This one is a summary of all of the points above. Like your physical health, personal performance and your mentality all take a hit because of your overtraining, the worst happens, and that is your motivation fleeting.

You simply aren't getting anywhere. You're trying so hard to move forward and yet still going backwards. You get an injury or too tired to keep going, and that's when the motivation just can't keep up. If you feel like giving up, take a break for a while and realise the seriousness of overtraining. That might be the cause of all of these issues in the first place.

Ultimately, your fitness needs to be a lifestyle choice and not just a short-term performance or physique goal. Make sure that you're exercising healthily and taking the breaks you need as and when you need to. Overtraining is almost abusing exercise and the symptoms will be sure to let you know, so just take it steady. Talk to a GP of fitness specialist for more information or check out this link.

Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.

If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.