The divide between adaptive stress and destructive stress is a delicate line. You can greatly maximise your gains if only you can learn to walk the gauntlet in between these two factors. Listening to your body for states of overtraining and undertraining is reasonable.
No physical culturist is immune to the plague called overtraining and bodybuilders more so, for their all-powerful, all-consuming will to excel at all costs. This burning desire to be the best is surely healthy but must, at the same time, be tempered with wisdom and patience.
What is overtraining?
Most of the research work in this regard defined overtraining as a condition in which performance experiences a dip. In simpler terms, if an athlete experiences one or two bad workouts, he/she is not necessarily overtrained but if on a consistent basis this phenomenon persists, then the chances of hisher being overtrained exists.
Overtraining results from an imbalance between the amount of stress applied to the body and mind, and the individual’s ability to adapt.
The factors of overtraining are basically categorised into two broad categories:
This factor is difficult to diagnose and even more difficult to cure. The trainee and the trainer are required to know each other well. Since the cure lies in lifestyle changes, they have to be upfront with each other.
Collective accumulation of applied physical stress, which is more severe than the body can tolerate, are classified to be organismic factors. It probably is the most pervasive form amongst bodybuilders as well. Hence, it becomes all the more important for a physical culturist to impose appropriate amounts of stress on their muscles to enhance the constructive process and avoid the destructive process.
This requires meticulous planning and constant monitoring of one’s bodily functions. Following are some guidelines that one can follow to ensure uninterrupted progress in one’s efforts in pursuing their goals:
- By maintaining a training log, the progress can be tracked.
- Work on a rational training programme — one built on logic rather than ego.
- Listen and pay keen attention to your body both while training and off it.
- Maintain harmony between socioeconomic factors.
- Train in a gym where emphasis is laid on basic hard training rather than on equipment, ambience, supplements and training confusion. Establish short-term goals.
- Help your body with everything it needs to recuperate and develop by providing it natural nutrition and appropriate rest periods between workouts.
- Monitoring heart rate — both resting heart rate and during recovery from exercise.
- Measuring the PH value of blood.
- Coach’s subjective appraisal of an athlete’s attitude.
The appalling irony of bodybuilding is that the training methods most popular today are unfit for drug-free and genetically typical people. Additionally, those popular training methods are excessively time-consuming and impractical for busy people.
(Author is a Fitness Expert)