You Are Responsible For Your Own Education On Over Training

Hi folks,

From time to time I receive articles from friends about over training. I cannot imagine how Ironman training could lead to too much exercise, can you? My approach to this issue is pretty simple, and here are my rules:

  1. If my morning pulse is up by more than 5-10 beats, I may be over trained and should back off simply because more is not necessarily better. A note to people, such as myself, with an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) stent graft, or maybe other cardiovascular issues: after my surgery in August 2010, my resting pulse jumped from 38 to 50, and it has stayed there, even though my general level of fitness has essentially returned to my pre-stent level. The lesson here is that you need to re-evaluate such variables and then get on with your post-stent life.
  2. If my mood changes dramatically, especially for the worse, finding myself impatient with things that would normally not phase me one little bit. Definite sign of excessive training.
  3. If I just don’t want to work out. Sometimes my body is just being lazy, in which case I always feel much better after the workout. Sometimes I am over trained, and the workout does nothing for me. Time to tell my coach, and back off for a few days.

Sage Rountree covers this issue nicely in her recent book on Recovery.  Here is a link to a recent article on the subject, forwarded to my Inbox by my friend Eric, in Philadelphia (Thanks, Eric).

Also, take a look at the Four Hour Body, which addresses training efficiency in wonderful detail (highly recommended reading). For further reading there are other articles under the ‘Useful Links’ tab of this blogsite, and any leads to more material for that page would be much appreciated.

There is plenty of information on over training on the Internet, and the study of this subject should be an inherent component of your training.


-k Your Medical Mind



  1. Happy Birthday Land Lubber

  2. Thank you young man. I really love the sea, not that I have seen it like you have, but sea sickness confines me largely to the land. Another trip around the sun over, and ready for another. -k

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Disclaimer: As a veterinarian, I do not provide medical advice for human animals. If you undertake or modify an exercise program, consult your medical advisors before doing so. Undertaking activities pursued by the author does not mean that he endorses your undertaking such activities, which is clearly your decision and responsibility. Be careful and sensible, please.