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 Post subject: Is this overtraining?
PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2011 11:23 am 
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n00b
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I have a hard time believing that I'm in an overtrained state, particularly after a long break during the holidays which was followed-up by a nasty cold.

Thanks to the cold & holidays, tn the last 30 days, I've worked out 17 days.

I typically work compound movements in the 6-10 rep range to failure. I usually do 6-9 sets per body part. Most bodyparts are hit 2x per week.

Doesn't seem like a way to overtrain. But here's the problem: I FEEL weak.

Perfect example: I do 6 sets with my Captains of Crush Grippers every day. 3 sets with the 'T' gripper to warm up and 3 sets with the '1' gripper. The 'T' gripper is usually really really easy. The '1' gripper is usually somewhat difficult but I do get full closure on it on every rep. For a while there, I felt I was ready to move up to the '2' gripper.

Lately, however, they've gotten more and more difficult. Now, I can't even close the 'T' gripper.

Other movements have had similar results - either I've had a reduction in weight lifted or how many reps I can perform with the same weight.

This looks very much like over training.

If that's the case, how do I recover without risking detraining?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:06 pm 
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Deific Wizard of Sagacity
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just take a week off, eat loads and get some rest. Your strength levels won't suffer much if it's just a week, they may even improve


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:20 pm 
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There are a lot of factors that can lead to being over trained that don't happen in the weight room. The fact that you have had a cold but still put in 17 days training out of 30 is an indication that you might not have recovered enough from the cold. In fact just getting a cold should have been a red flag that you were in need of a break.

Don't worry about the detraining. You will not lose anything from taking a week off.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:24 pm 
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The daily gripper work won't cause overtraining. Maybe sore hands/forearms, maybe lack of progress from inadequate muscle recovery, but not overtraining. However, doing multiple compound movements to failure will. The more muscle mass involved, the more "damaging" it is to go to failure. And those last "grinder" reps don't actually add anything to your training, compared to what they take out of you. Going just short of "technical failure" where your form starts to break down is probably best. Plan so you don't miss reps.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 3:01 am 
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The short period where I eventually *knew* I was over training is when I could literally go to bed at 7:30/8pm - that seems to be my indicator, it's like I have been truley zapped of energy - regardless of how much I eat/ate.

I didn't experience soreness at all - that's the contrast, it was pure drained feeling on things like squats - had to really mentally fight to finish last set properly without doing a 2 inch squat :)

Hard to diagnose what someone elses is to be honest, just telling you what my experience was.

Anyway - I fixed mine by reducing x3 heavy squats to x2 with one day for light work (like texas method) and reducing my 3x5 deadlift to 1x5 and one day of rows (light day) instead of the huge deads (huge comparitivley, 1x5 compound obviously allowing a bigger load than 3x8 or 5x5)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 8:45 am 
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Jungledoc wrote:
The daily gripper work won't cause overtraining. Maybe sore hands/forearms, maybe lack of progress from inadequate muscle recovery, but not overtraining.


Yeah, I didn't mean to imply it would. I just used that as a really clear example that something was wrong.

Jungledoc wrote:
However, doing multiple compound movements to failure will. The more muscle mass involved, the more "damaging" it is to go to failure. And those last "grinder" reps don't actually add anything to your training, compared to what they take out of you. Going just short of "technical failure" where your form starts to break down is probably best. Plan so you don't miss reps.


I typically call it "failure" when I can no longer get a full rep out with good form. I'm a stickler for form and for doing a full rep every time, so when I can't do either of those, then I've reached failure.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 11:18 am 
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Overtraining is a lot harder to reach than most people realize. I'd say only a few percent of the weight training population actually ever reaches REAL overtraining.

Being rundown is more than likely caused by an exhausting work schedule or something of the like, honestly.

What does your workout routine typically entail exercise-wise?

Do you spend a lot of the day on your feet/moving around/working, etc?


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 12:18 pm 
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I think there me be an issue with symantics. Overtraining is simply training more than you can recover from. That's not hard to do. Many people train too often and don't rest enough. It's not always caused by training as you point out. Increased stress requires increased rest. The symptoms that the OP presented, strength loss and a severe cold are both signs of overtraining.

What you're talking that is rare about is the more severe form http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/over ... 62499a.htm

That type of overtraining comes from chronically ignoring the signs and pushing through anyway. I've seen people like that. They look guant and worn out, like they've aged 10 years in a week.

One of the easier ways to predict overtraining is to track your resting heart rate. It will go up prior to other symptoms showing up.


Last edited by stuward on Fri Jan 14, 2011 12:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 12:23 pm 
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stuward wrote:
I think there me be an issue with symantics. Overtraining is simply training more than you can recover from. That's not hard to do. Many people train too often and don't rest enough. It's not always caused by training as you point out. Increased stress requires increased rest. The symptoms that the OP presented, strength loss and a severe cold are both signs of overtraining.

What you're talking that is rare about is the more severe form http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/over ... 62499a.htm

That type of overtraining comes from chronically ignoring the signs and pushing through anyway. I've seen people like that. They look guant and worn out, like they've aged 10 years in a week.


The first overtraining you described I've heard termed as 'overreaching'. I look at overreaching as much more common (like you said, training more than you can recover from).


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jan 14, 2011 12:26 pm 
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That's true, although some use over-reaching as a planned over training to provide a more intense overload. Dr. Squat uses it in this way. I just ran across this site that uses the term the way you do.
http://www.shayananna.org/id27.html


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