Perils of Overtraining

Sorry it’s been awhile but i’ve been busy being on holiday. Not true. I’ve been busy starting school again and really getting back to hard training. In fact, as the title of this post eludes to, i’ve been training hard… maybe a little too hard. I currently have a nasty cold and i blame it on too much training, too soon and not enough sleep. Here is the story:

Three weeks ago, i had a decent medium-difficulty week for me, in january. It felt great to be back at it properly after the holidays and i was focused. That first week went by fine, the next week (two weeks ago) i turned it up and trained about 20% more than i had the previous week. It felt even better. I was good and tired, but strong in weights and fast in my aerobic cross training. When i received last weeks’ program in my inbox from Mike, i looked at it, and added more. One or two more work outs only, but i also added length to a lot of the other workouts. Again i increased by about 20%. Mike’s original program was only about 5-10% harder than the previous week. But i felt good and i wanted to have a really hard week. Things started out fine, then it got cold out. The cold meant more indoor stuff which i don’t like, and more of me leaving the gym sweaty and underdressed. Normally this would have been fine, but in conjunction with a late friday night and saturday night i was done for. As a side note, conventional program design states that you should never increase a training load by more than 10% from week to week. That means that you can either increase volume of work by 10% or level of intensity by 10%, not both. I remembered this from a sports physiology course, and choose to believe it didn’t apply to me. EGO.

By the way, my friday night was late because i was on a the Quebec TV show Bons Baisers de France as part of their Olympic athlete group, which was a lot of fun. My late saturday night was because i was having dinner with friends, that didn’t end till…..late enough. Either way i woke up on sunday not feeling great, and no it wasn’t only due to the curry i had had for dinner. On monday morning i got up, feeling a little listless and went for a ski. While skiing i noticed that i couldn’t get my heart rate up and it hurt my chest to breathe. I cut my ski short went home and did nothing for the rest of the day. I got progressively more sore and last night went to bed at around 8:00pm. I woke up this morning sore all over, tired and weak, but feeling a little better than yesterday. I have taken today completely off and i think that i’ll be well enough tomorrow to do something.

There is a moral to the above sad story. That moral is don’t over do it. I got carried away and now i feel like garbage and have had to miss two days of training. If i had been smarter last week and increased my training by the prescribed 10% i would have been OK.

Train hard and train smart!

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