It's important to monitor yourself when you're working out, and knowing the signs of overtraining is part of the process. Here's a look at some of those signs, although symptoms vary with each individual.
Muscle Cramps Or Soreness
Muscle cramps can be a sign of dehydration, heat stroke, or of an intensity overload. You're probably OK if the cramp isn't enough to keep you from moving, but you need to take a break if it forces you to stop. Never ignore a cramp that just won't go away. Additionally, if your cramps and muscle soreness last for 72 hours or more, it's a sign that your muscles aren't recovering.
Dizziness or being light-headed can be caused by a variety of factors, and shouldn't be ignored when the symptoms don't subside. Both can be a sign of low blood sugar, dehydration or heat stroke.
Quivering muscles are a common occurrence during an intense workout and may be a sign that you've reached a healthy point of fatigue that can result in strength and endurance gains. The flip side, however, is when your muscles are shaking so badly that you can't control your movements and/or maintain proper form during the exercise. This also can be a sign of dehydration and low blood sugar, and it's a signal to take a break until the trembling subsides.
Side stitches often occur while running or during other forms of cardio training. The good news is that they often subside as your fitness level increases, and can be prevented/reduced through proper warmup and hydration. But a side stitch is nothing to mess with if the pain sharpens and continues up to your left shoulder — it could even be a sign of a heart attack.
If you're sure that your nausea isn't the result of something you ate, or didn't eat, then it could be a signal to lessen the intensity of your workouts. But you may feel queasy if you exercise too soon after eating, or when exercising on an empty stomach, so monitoring when you eat is another important factor to consider.
The Downtown Athletic Club of Amarillo offers fitness, training, overall wellness, and much more. The DAC's personal trainers are available seven days a week.