Are You Overtraining? Here’s How to Tell:

Are You Overtraining? Here’s How to Tell:

Overtraining. 10 years ago it was the buzzword that kept a lot of people from seeing results. Now it’s almost a goal for some. As if their effort is the payoff in gym regardless of results (I’ve seen plenty of people bragging about injuries from “going so hard”) Others state that there are only a few people in the world that are capable of overtraining. If you think this is the case, then start squatting now and don’t stop until I personally tell you to… like face to face.

So, are you overtraining? Here’s how to tell: Does your exercise program make your life more difficult? If yes, then you are overtraining.

This does not mean that being sore is overtraining. If you are looking to compete in a bodybuilding or figure competition then you have accepted what comes with it… ALL that come with it (the muscle stiffness that comes from hypertrophy) and you will have some rough days. But you’re an adult and that is your choice. If you have decided to train for athletic competitions, Crossfit style or OCR then you can expect some bumps and bruises, because that’s what comes with these competitions. These are a sport and just like any other and again, being an adult, you need to take ownership of that.

Now, if your goal is to increase longevity and quality of life because you want more energy and to spend time with your family, but you can’t walk for 3 days after you workout, then you may not be getting what you want from exercise. So make sure you’re putting the right effort and resources into it. You should feel that there is change happening in your body and you should be progressing but ultimately health and fitness is about getting more out of life.

Put in work. Eat for fuel and recovery. Learn something new. Have some fun. Get some sleep. Repeat that 90% of the time and you are a fit and healthy person.

Don’t Be a Dumbbell: Avoid These 11 Common Gym Mistakes

Written by Amy Roberts.

Trainers see just about everything when it comes to bad gym behavior, from moves that put muscles and joints at risk to careless habits that endanger the health of others (or simply annoy them).

SafeBee asked several trainers about the most common mistakes they see, and for their advice on how to stay injury — and embarrassment — free at the gym.

Mistake #1: Engaging in boot-camp madness

You’re pumped you made a commitment to get fit, and you can’t wait to crush your first workout. But do too much too soon, and at the very least you’ll be very sore. “Two-a-days and high-intensity boot camps are for sports and the military, not for building a solid base of a healthy life and body,” says Dallas-area fitness trainer and health coach Clint Fuqua, NASM-CPT. “Simply surviving a workout is not the way to increase health for the long term and will normally leave you on injury reserve, getting depressed and fat on the couch.”

Mistake #2: Diving in without warming up

You want to get in and out of the gym in the most efficient way possible. But don’t just go full-swing into yourkettlebell swings or strength circuit or sprint intervals without first priming your muscles for the demands you’ll be making on them. “I rarely see anyone do anything related to a warm-up: no foam rolling, no stretching, let alone a dynamic warm-up,” says Henry Halse, CSCS, ACSM-CPT, a trainer in Philadelphia. Spending a few minutes doing arm circles, leg swings, and a few warm-up squats, for example, can save you pain and possible injury later.

Related: Injury-Proof Your Exercise Resolution

Mistake #3: Believing the calorie burn on the screen

Cardio machines display all sorts of numbers: distance traveled, speed, heart rate. And every gym-goer’s fave: calorie burn. Sad news: This number could be inflated — by up to 42 percent, according to one report.

Mistake #4: Sticking to all cardio, all the time

Access to treadmills and ellipticals may have been your impetus for joining the gym, but don’t get cardio tunnel vision. “If you do the same aerobic workout every day, your body will adapt and you won’t see the changes you want,” says Kate Vidulich, ACSM-CPT and the founder of Mixing up your routine is essential to keeping your muscles — and you — from getting bored.

Be sure to also lift weights or do some other form of resistance training, especially if you want to maximize your calorie burn even after you leave the gym (this is known as the after-burn effect). “Strength training increases basal metabolic rate (BMR) meaning you use more calories to live,” says San Antonio-based personal trainerBrandon Mancine, NASM-CPT.

Related: How to Stay Germ-Free at the Gym

Mistake #5: Lifting weights that are too light

“Women in particular tend to underestimate their lifting ability, and therefore never reach their full training potential,” says Vidulich. “Why? They don’t want big muscles. But lifting light weights for a billion reps won’t create the intensity required to get any noticeable results.” How do you know that you’re properly loaded? If you can do 10 reps and feel like you could do easily do five or more additional ones, you gotta go up. Ideally, you should have just enough gas to maybe churn out two or three more.

Mistake #6: Lifting weights that are too heavy

Overloading yourself is a bad idea, too, and a recipe for injury. “Not everyone has the biomechanical or neuromuscular structure to control heavy squats or bench pressing, so don’t put square pegs in round holes,” says Marc Megna, CSCS, an NFL player turned strength coach and co-founder of Miami’s Anatomy at 1220. “There are regressions, progressions, and alternatives for every exercise. The goal of every training session should be to be able to perform the next training session.” If you’re not sure how to choose the right weight or exercise for you, ask a trainer.

Related: Can’t Get Into the Exercise Habit? Try this Trick

Mistake #7: Ignoring your form

How you perform an exercise is as important to your wellbeing as getting to the gym in the first place. Bad posture, incorrect or incomplete range of motion, and compensating with one muscle when you’re looking to work another — all of these mistakes not only sacrifice the quality of your workout but increase your risk of injury. “For strength training, I tell my clients: Learn the movement, then challenge the movement,” says Mancine. This often means literally going through the motions with no weight at first.

Mistake #8: Zoning out on cardio machines

Bad form can happen on cardio machines, too. It’s easy to just let the machine chug along and not watch your posture, or worse. “I can’t tell you how often I see people on stepmills looking to work legs and butt, hunched over in a posture that makes it impossible to fire their glutes fully if at all,” Mancine says. Never hold on to a cardio machine unless it’s designed for you to do so (like ellipticals with moving handles), and look straight ahead — not up at a TV or down at your magazine — to avoid neck troubles.

Mistake #9: Not consulting a pro

For some reason, people are unlikely to ask for help or advice from the trainers at the gym. (Educated guess: They’re worried she’ll try to hard-sell them to buy sessions.) Instead, they watch other gym-goers to get ideas, or chat with the lifter on the bench next to them. “Commercial gyms are also universities of ‘broscience,’” Halse says. “When someone has a question, everyone instantly becomes a fitness/nutrition/rehab expert and gives their two cents — it makes me cringe.” First, the advice might be flat-out wrong, and second, what might work for one person’s body or goals may not work for another’s. Many gyms offer complimentary training sessions when you sign up. Take advantage. Ask lots of questions. (And have your “thanks but no thanks” speech ready for the sales portion, if need be.)

Related: How to Avoid a Treadmill Accident

Mistake #10: Not dressing for success

This one seems like a no-brainer, but it happens. “Booty shorts and flip-flops both have their place and it’s not in the gym,” Fuqua says. “Leave the beachwear in the bag and come to the gym dressed to train so you can look great at the beach later.” That means, ideally, wearing clothing made of performance material that wicks sweat away from your skin and dries quickly, and choosing appropriate shoes for your activity.

Mistake #11: Being a slob

Do your part to keep this shared space tidy. Follow the rule kids are taught in kindergarten: If you use it, put it away. And that’s not all. “I get it — working out is sweaty business. But not wiping down the equipment or cleaning up after yourself really gets up my nose,” says Vidulich. “Please use a towel!” Wiping down surfaces before and after you touch them is also a good way to avoid getting sick at the gym.

Amy Roberts is a certified personal trainer. She writes about fitness, health and a variety of other topics for many well-known publications.

See the original article here:

Skip The Scale: Non-Traditional Ways To Measure Weight Loss

In an interview I did with’s Mountain Biking expert Beth Puliti, we spoke about “non-traditional ways to measure weight loss”. I would have rather seen it titled, “Nontraditional way to measure increased health” but I understand which would get more clicks. Here is my contribution with a link to the full article at the bottom.


Ride Your Bike & Set Goals
In addition, Brandon Mancine, certified personal trainer, nutritionist and owner of B-Fit Personal Training/Brandon Mancine Fitness in San Antonio, TX, has clients do the following:

1. Regularly take part in an active hobby that you enjoy. As you get in better shape, your physical abilities will increase. This means you can accomplish more. If you weekly take part in an active hobby (let’s say… ballroom dancing), you will be less likely to skip a workout because you are experiencing how it improves your life by allowing you to do more of what you enjoy.

2. Develop an empowering goal. It could be tied to that hobby (compete in a ballroom competition) or to deadlift your bodyweight, run a mile in a certain time. But have something that you will accomplish by a certain date and set a plan to get there.

Full article: