5 signs you're exercising too much

These are the signs to look for if you think you might be overdoing it...

model sit ups N.jpg
model sit ups N.jpg
(Image credit: REX/Shutterstock)

These are the signs to look for if you think you might be overdoing it...

It’s no secret that exercise is good for you, but as the saying goes, too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. While a lot of us find it hard to get into the rhythm of working out, once you do it can become addictive. However, one of the most important parts of fitness is the recovery period, so unless you’re giving your body down time, you won’t be reaping the full rewards of your hard work.

But what exactly is too much? 

As a beginner, you should be aiming to do three sessions a week of 30 minutes moderate exercise, which can be increased to five days a week as your level of fitness increases. But, if you're doing high intensity interval exercises, it's not recommended to do them more than three times a week.

(Image credit: Beretta/Sims/REX/Shutterstock)

These are the signs to look for if you think you might be overdoing it:

1. Exercise leaves you feeling exhausted instead of energised – a sure sign your muscles need a break. It seems obvious, but if you're noticing an overall lack of energy, an inability to complete your normal workouts or muscle soreness that lasts longer than 72 hours, you need a rest. 

2. Injuries and illnesses are slow to clear up. Healthy people have a good immune system, so if yours isn't strong, you can bet that's a sure sign you need rest. 

3. You have a short fuse. Too much exercise can lead to a build-up of stress, which in turn affects your level of tolerance for every day things.

4. You’re doing several sessions of exercise each day, but you’re not training for an event. Your resting heart rate is typically between 60-100 beats per minute (or 40 beats per minute for athletes), so if your normal heart rate sits at around 45 and then jumps to 60 beats per minute, you’re overdoing it. 

5. You can’t sleep. The stress your workout puts on your body can up your levels of cortisol, which promotes insomnia.

No pain, no gain? Sure, but listen to your body and pay attention to what it's telling you. 

Natalie Lukaitis