Training hard or overtraining?

November 9, 2009 | by Dr. Jess

Yep! Sick as a dog. I’m on the couch, watching “Semi Homemade” with Sandra Lee on the Food Network and writing my first blog. And since I’m unable to torture my patients with ART® these past two days, I’ve decided to talk about slowing down.
It is true, we all need to slow down in our daily and weekly lives to avoid the dreaded cold and flu. When you are out for the count, you are as useless as a dull knife. Attempting to get everything done ASAP can actually hurt you, and can even set you behind. Training is no exception. There is such a thing as overtraining. And overtraining can hurt you. I know we all get excited to run our first marathon or do our first half Ironman or Full Ironman. And many of us are able to do so injury free. However, what you don’t feel during training can haunt you for future races.
I typically see many injuries occur during training for the second marathon, or the second half ironman. One possibility for this is we do not give ourselves ample recovery time. Our bodies have their own odometers and we cannot turn back the miles. If you have not been training consistently and then train for a marathon or half Ironman, you are racking up miles pretty quickly. Sticking with the car analogy, think of an injury springing up on you “out of the blue”. It’s like the wear and tear of a timing belt. You don’t know it’s wearing out until one day it breaks.
My advice? It’s ok to take a week off from training or to have “rest days.” Your body needs to recover. Most repetitive strain injuries occur due to the body’s inability to rebuild tendons in time before the next workout.
Whew… enough of Sandra Lee. GiadaDeLaurentis is on. Gotta learn some mean Italian cooking!
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