Exercise! - How do you avoid overdoing it?

View Full Version : How do you avoid overdoing it?

02-18-2012, 10:31 PM
Mainly where exercise is concerned. I just joined a gym last week and went Wednesday-Friday. My ultimate plan is to go 5 days a week, Monday-Friday after work. It will help me keep up a routine and I think that's probably easiest for me. The gym itself recommends starting at 3-5 days a week so you don't get burnt out. Well, here it is Saturday night and I'm feeling depressed and restless because I didn't hit the gym today.

My question I guess is more geared toward what you do when you get like this? I'm pretty much consumed by my weight loss efforts both where my diet and exercise are concerned. It's all I can think about. I'm unhappy with my life and am (mostly) confident that once I lose my weight I can make changes (I'm planning on trying to enlist in the USAF) in my life that will make me happy. Because of being consumed, I find it difficult to think of anything else and therefore I feel guilty if I don't exercise. Anyone else have this problem? Any suggestions for how to resolve it and/or not be quite so..."obsessed"? Is it bad to exercise daily or have you gotten burnt out from exercising too frequently? It's not like I do a super hardcore workout. I've been doing an hour of water aerobics and then 30-45 minutes of weight training. At least it doesn't feel like a hardcore workout... That's another thing. I didn't feel that great about working out last night because I wasn't burning like I was from the night before. There was a different water aerobics class on Thursday and it was much more intense.

While I'm at it, I'm going to ask if anyone has problems with their knees because of being overweight? I'm 25 and my knees are starting to give me problems now that I'm exercising more than I was. I had been walking on the treadmill (at a slowish 2.5 mph pace) for a couple of weeks and then they started hurting a little. Now with the weight training, they're hurting a little more. This doesn't bode well for my aspirations to enlist because of the running involved in BMT. Heck, I want to work up to running period!

02-18-2012, 10:45 PM
I like to exercise 6 days a week for 1-2 hours a day. I've been doing this since June 2011 (the intensity of my exercising has increased, though). I find that, for me, I am more consistent about exercise and don't dread it if I make it a daily routine (& Sunday is really my one day of rest---I need it in many respects!). If I just exercise 3-4 days a week, I tend to get lazy and slack off---at least this is what has happened in the past.

I know others will disagree, but I say kudos to you for your enthusiasm. It's your hobby for now. Just realize that your level of devotion may wane, and when that happens, you'll have to "just do it" as the Nike commercial says. At that time, you can re-evaluate your workout routine and cut back if that's what works at that time. But, for now, if what is working for you is working out 5-6 days a week, go for it!

FWIW, my sister has been working out intensely for 3-4 years, several days a week and she still enjoys it. It's a stress reliever for her. So, not everybody gets burned out from daily exercise. Besides, I've read that one of the common characteristics of long-term maintainers is that they exercise most days of the week.

02-18-2012, 11:38 PM
Maybe you could go for a long walk on the weekend? Or maybe a low setting on the tread mill? It'd be something low key, but you're still moving.

02-19-2012, 02:21 AM
You're at the beginning so good advice is to ease into it. You have not exactly eased into it. That's probably why your knees are yelling at you.

I love that you're obsessed with exercise. You will see rapid results so long as you control your calorie intake to be less than what you're burning

For the knees - if it's general irritation and not a diagnosable tear or other problem, take Osteo Chondroitin and/or fish oil. You should feel noticable results in 10 days. If not, rest a while longer and if it persists, see a doc.

Good luck to you! What a healthy way to conquer your dissatisfaction in life. I know you will be rockin' by summer and having such a better outlook!

02-19-2012, 04:32 AM
I exercise 3-4 days a week and that's mostly because I have two children that need my attention so my time is limited. I used to exercise 6 days a week over last summer and while I got good results, slowly my body started to rebel and I felt burnt-out. It wasn't until my libido dropped off severely that I went to the doctor. He told me to ease up and the libido would come back. I exercised less, felt better and hormones level are fine now. Do what you what as everyone is different. Just listen to your body, that's all.

02-19-2012, 08:27 AM
I *work* to maintain my obsession. Let's call it 'dedication'. I want fitness to be part of my identity so I stick w/it forever.

I read about fitness on rest days or do some light activity, like a social walk w/girlfriends or yoga or mobility exercises. I also read recipes & plan healthy meals that support my goals.

I enjoy recovery days because I know my body needs them & taking them will help me reach my goals.

02-19-2012, 10:02 AM
Thank you for all the suggestions! I honestly never even considered walking on "down" days because for the first 2 and a half weeks, that was my primary form of exercise. I will give it a go and see how that is.

@fitness4life - I am also going to pick up some Osteo Chondroitin and fish oil. Crossing my fingers they help!

02-19-2012, 01:35 PM
I'm about your age (I'm 26) and I joined the gym in October of last year. Like you I loved it and kind of got addicted to it and felt awful when I didn't go. I've gone 5-6 days a week from the beginning, but when I started I didn't go hardcore on all days. 2 or 3 of the days I'd walk the treadmill at a slower pace.

And I can also completely understand the knee thing. I have an old softball injury in my left knee which required surgery so I'm one of those people who can tell if it's really going to snow or not (who needs a weatherman lol). My knees have definitely gotten used to it. I'm a big fan of the elliptical and arc trainer (running on the treadmill or outside is waaayyy too painful). Then I come home and ice em and start all over the next day. I've had success with that.

Oh and on days where my knee is too sore for the gym, I have a 20 min pilates workout that I do at home instead. That way it's no impact for my knees (I'm laying on a yoga mat haha) and I still feel like I'm doing something. Sometimes I swear the mental aspect of weight loss is harder than the physical! Lol. Anyways good luck! :)

02-19-2012, 02:08 PM
Do you still go that 5-6 days a week? My thing is that I've got a treadmill at home, so I guess there is that, that I could use on the weekends. I just don't want to overdo the exercise altogether. I just kind of feel like I need to do something!

As suggested above, I got some Osteo Chondroitin and fish oil for my knees and I'm going to see if that helps any.

I did also pick up Zumba 2 for the Wii and I did some of the lessons and one song on it. It wasn't much, but it did kind of help me feel like I did a little something today. We'll see how I feel later on. Hah!

02-19-2012, 02:37 PM
What about some elliptical or cycling or nonknee straining activities thrown in there. On the cycling, if your knees do start talking to you, lower the resistance until the pressure is relieved and if your gym has cycle class or access to cycle class types of bikes, all the better!

02-19-2012, 02:47 PM
There's only one day a week where I do no standard exercise at all, and even then I'm walking and moving around thanks to my job, so I'm never completely still.

I exercise 6 days a week, sometimes twice a day. I alternate body parts sometimes if I feel something worked another part too hard: for example if my legs are sore, I'll use my weights and work my arms or do some core exercises instead. I listen to my body and work my routine accordingly :)

Understand that your body needs rest--especially if you're new at this! Muscles aren't built at the gym, they're built when you're resting after a heavy workout! For example: Thursday is my rest day which is right after my heavy weight training on Wednesday. My body needs that day to rest to build and repair my muscles and I'm usually quite hungry that day.

Don't stress about going to the gym all the time. It's great you're so motivated but remember there are always small things you can do at home :)

02-19-2012, 03:24 PM
@fyreflie24 - I do the water aerobics both because it's less strain on the joints and because it burns more calories. I do plan to hop on the elliptical too though I'm going to have to build up to that because after just five minutes the other day, I was done! I might try one of the stationary bikes too, but we'll see! Lots of options, for sure!

@sontaikle - Did you exercise that frequently when you were losing weight? I've read that overdoing the exercise (not just getting burnt out on it) can hinder you too and that's the last thing I want.

02-19-2012, 11:17 PM
I've been exercising regularly for over seven years now, it's when I started eating healthier that the majority of the weight I had to lose came off :) During that time I exercised about 5 times a week (intense). I've added more now because I'm eating more and find I have more energy than when I was losing, but I'm sure if I chose a higher calorie intake when I was losing that I could have kept up this pace of 6x a week, twice a day sometimes.

I thought I answered your question about your knees...but I guess I didn't type it in my last post :?: I too had problems with my knees and had to give up running for a while. I found that lifting weights was something I loved doing much more and I didn't wind up with knee pain that I was getting while running. Spinning is another exercise that didn't aggravate my knees.

I picked up running again recently. I thought that being a whole lot lighter would help me out but I'm starting to feel pain again so I might have to give it up...again (or maybe just stick with it 2x a week instead of 4). I think I had one too many soccer injuries as a kid :/ Or maybe just being overweight for all my life did a number on them

02-20-2012, 06:39 PM
Oh, wow. That's amazing and great inspiration!

Unfortunately I'm going to have to get into running because I hope to enlist in the Air Force and as such, I'm going to have to be able to do a mile and a half in under 14 minutes during BMT. Last night I did realize that my knees are bruised from a fall I took last Tuesday on the ice covered parking lot at work. It was more embarassing than anything else, but I guess I hit harder than I realized. lol I was hurting a little before then though. So far today (day 2 on the Osteo Chronditin) they're faring a little better. Of course I haven't yet hit the gym... Again though I'm sticking to water aerobics for now and going to try to avoid lifting the weight that aggravates my knees (leg curl? not sure what it's called). I'm also going to start Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred tomorrow morning... I'll definitely listen to them though. I'm also worried about being overweight my whole life had the same effect on my knees. Hoping that's not so and they just need to be strengthened and have less pressure on them!

Thanks again for your input! I really appreciate it!