Overtraining Syndrome

Overtraining can negatively affect physical and mental performance. Moreover, it can increase the likelihood of sustaining an injury. Overtraining is exactly what the word implies: too much physical activity.

The overtraining syndrome can present with a wide range of symptoms (See Table 13-2). Overtraining is generally associated with endurance sports, such as swimming or running. Cross-training, rest, and taking time off from certain physical activities will all reduce or prevent overtraining symptoms. The person who continues training despite the symptoms listed in Table 13-2 will only become more overtrained, continue to have decreases in performance, and will be at an increased risk for injury.

Table 13-2. Symptoms of Overtraining Syndrome

Decreased performance.

♦ Feeling "burned-out" or stale.

Difficulty making decisions.

♦ Difficulty concentrating.

Chronically fatigued.

♦ Angry and irritable.

Lacking motivation.

♦ Muscle soreness.

Disturbances in mood.

♦ Increased distractibility.

Feeling depressed.

♦ Difficulty sleeping.

Increased morning heart rate.

Supplements and Performance

In this chapter you will learn about:

  • Vitamin and mineral supplements.
  • Nutritional ergogenic agents; hype versus reality.
  • Risks associated with using performance enhancers.
  • Ergolytic agents.

Gaining and maintaining physical fitness takes time and dedication. Often, to achieve these goals, people turn to various supplements based on their claims as performance enhancers. However, no supplement can replace the benefits of a well-planned exercise routine and a nutritionally-sound diet!

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