What's the difference between overtraining and overreaching, and how can you avoid them?

When it comes to making gains in the gym, is there ever such a thing as overdoing it? Absolutely. Overtraining and overreaching do more harm than good, so it's crucial you recognize their signs and put strategies in place to ensure that you're avoiding them. Continue reading to discern the difference between overtraining and overreaching, what causes them, and how you can correct it to maximize your success in the gym.

What’s the Difference Between Overreaching and Overtraining?

Overreaching is a condition that happens in response to heavy or intense loads and is temporary. Overreaching can bring on a host of symptoms, including feeling unwell, disrupted sleep, and mood swings. Because it's a temporary condition, overreaching doesn't significantly impact athletic performance. As you begin to recognize the signs of overreaching, you can adjust your training schedule and practices so that you return to normal. But if you continue to push yourself despite these adverse effects, chronic overreaching can lead to overtraining.

When you continue to overreach and push your body beyond its limits, overtraining happens and is marked by chronic and extreme fatigue. Overtraining is serious and is caused by prolonged, high volume, high intensity, repeated, and reoccurring monotonous training sessions. Continual overtraining can lead to several serious conditions, including nervous and hormonal systems disorders.

When you begin to recognize the signs of overreaching, it's important to slow down and be on high alert. And if you get to the point where you've overtrained, it's critical to stop immediately and let your body recover.

Recognize the Signs

Tiredness, declines in performance, and slowed recovery are just a few signs of overreaching and overtraining. If intensified training continues and you don’t give your body time to rest, your athletic performance will decrease, so when you recognize the signs of overreaching and overtraining, it's essential to stop and immediately give your body rest.

Here are some of the most common symptoms of overreaching and overtraining:

*Slow heart rate recovery after training at a very high resting heart rate
*Increased arterial blood pressure
*Heart palpitations
*Nervousness and emotional instability
*Unrestful sleep and low sleep quality
*Decreased concentration
*High anxiety and unreasoned fear
*Excessive sweating under load
*Low interest in training
*Loss of appetite and body weight

If you continue to overreach and overtrain, the symptoms can progress and begin impacting other systems in your body and produce additional symptoms, including:

*Low resting heart rate
*Low blood pressure
*Increased tiredness
*Easy onset of fatigue
*Sleepiness and drowsiness
*Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
*Depressed immune system

It's critical to listen to your body and give it the rest it needs. Doing so will help you achieve better results in the gym and improve your overall well being.

What Causes Overreaching and Overtraining?

There are several causes of both overreaching and overtraining. The most common include:

*Methodological: not giving yourself enough rest or too intense of training loads
*Physiological: not enough sleep, nutritional imbalance, low tolerance of physical and mental stress
*Psychological: too much stress, unrealistic goals, excessive fear of failure
*Medical: illness, allergic reactions, excessive training post-trauma
*Climatic: time and climate zone changes, poor environmental quality, training in mountainous zones

How to Combat Overreaching and Overtraining

The first step is recognizing the signs of both and committing to taking a step back when needed. By maintaining healthy sleep habits, maintaining low stress, optimizing your nutrition, and giving yourself time to heal when injured, you can take some critical first steps to avoid overreaching and overtraining. Knowing your body and tracking how you feel before, during, and after training is also crucial. Using tools to measure your performance, breathing, and heart rate are also good objective ways to monitor your progress and make better determinations about when you're able to push a bit harder or when it's time to rest.

One way you can help ramp up your results without pushing yourself past your body's limits is through smart supplementation. The right supplements can help you lose more weight and see better muscle gains than training alone. The Elite Essentials Stack with Weight Loss Support is an excellent addition to your routine to amplify your workouts and help you build lean muscle and lose body fat. This five-supplement stack supports you from all aspects to help you achieve your goals without overtraining.

By closely monitoring your progress and how you feel during and after workouts, paired with quality supplements that fire up your results without putting extra strain on your body, you can achieve the results you’re looking for without suffering the detrimental effects of overreaching and overtraining.