Most people know, at least theoretically, that too much of everything is not good. While the exact total can be debated in today’s fast-driven and demanding society, over-exercising has clear consequences, and they are not healthy.
It’s OK to be inspired by the person next to you in spinning class, or the instructor, or a professional athlete, but they are not you. “Way too many exercise programs out there today push way too hard and lack the appropriate customization for individual needs,” Andrea Marcellus, fitness expert, life strategist, and founder and CEO of and/life, says.
Working out too much is not a good problem to have. In a way, it can be just as bad for your body as not being active at all.
The set-up for injury aside, a competitive approach to exercise – whether against a person or just your wearable – can keep you from ever leaning out because you need to eat so much to sustain your workout programs, Marcellus says. “I’ve seen it so many times (and did it to myself in my 20’s) – unbridled, dedicated effort that led to an unnecessary amount of muscle under a layer of dough that never goes. “
It’s important not to buy into clever marketing and messages about exercising only being effective if it takes place in a gym for an hour. “A 20-minute walk with friends or some simple moves done in your living room while watching TV works just as well,” Marcellus says.
Exercise is about three things: Improving your cardiovascular capacity, developing balanced muscles that align your bones properly and keep your metabolism humming, and developing flexibility so you can move freely and without pain. “That’s it,” she adds. Don’t make it too complicated for no reason.
This is where the tricky part comes in. It’s important to strategize the type of exercise you do to match the physique you are trying to create, Marcellus adds. For example, using free weights will result in a rounder musculature as opposed to using bands.
But no matter what your goal is, the bottom line is that overdoing it will only lead to unnecessary soreness, a high probability of overeating, and all around frustration when you don’t achieve the body of your dreams after considerable and dedicated effort.
Before you know it, your knees hurt but you are still jogging every day for an hour, you’re tired all the time but you still find yourself at the gym doing bench presses, you only feel happy while working out, and you are at the gym when you should be with family on special occasions.
You can still exercise when you’re too tired, but you have to know your limits. When it comes to working out, people too often set the bar too high and in the wrong place. Don’t work on every muscle of your body separately.
The and/life app features a kick-booty 5-minute “complete” workout – exactly the kind of thing tired people can do for a pick-me-up or on a day when you’re just moving to “maintain,” Marcellus says.
In conjunction with an “energy-efficient” eating plan (not taking in more energy than you need), you can absolutely get a dream body by simply being on your feet and active most of the day peppering muscle-developing exercise in throughout the day, she adds.
The key is, you guess it, consistency: You are what you do. “So if you’re dreaming of your couch on your way home after work, tell yourself ‘OK, yes, absolutely’ … but just be sure to use your kitchen counter as a bar and do a few sets of kick lunges or plies before you’re down for the count, Marcellus says.