Who doesn’t feel overwhelmed or stretched thin sometimes?
And it's no wonder since many of us are balancing careers,
side businesses, education, community involvement, children,
extended family. . . the list goes on.
If you have ever hit a wall when it comes to your training,
business, or life, I completely get it. I have been to that point
where I am just burned out.
Have you reached "burn out"?
Symptoms of "Burn Out":
- Lack of Motivation
- Difficulty with Attention or concentration
- Lack of progress
- Recurring illness or injury
The last one is the biggest for me. That voice in my head
tells me my lack of motivation is just "being lazy". However,
when I find it more difficult to recover from a cold or a
workout I need to listen.
The psychological stress of burn out breaks down the body
and immune system. That makes us more susceptible to
getting sick and taking longer to recover.
The question then comes. . . if I feel so stressed and
exhausted, should I push myself to workout?
Well . . . Yes AND No!
First though, are you burned out from exercise or just the
busy chaos of life?
Are you "burned out" from exercise?
If you are training hard, more than 5 days a week, and doing
the same regimen for more than 90 days your burn out may
be due to exercise. How do you know?
Attempt to do your normal workout. If at the end of your
warm up you still feel exhausted and unmotivated to finish
your body may be telling you a break is needed.
Another sign . . . rather than bouncing back from a tough
workout, your body is constantly aching or sore.
Are you "burned out" from life?
Sometimes the overwhelm of life can cause burn out. When
you feel psychologically stressed all the time and can't seem
to keep anything mentally straight you may need to slow
Physical symptoms of lethargy, a foggy brain, depression,
and digestive issues can be signs as well. If you are burning
the candle at both ends at work or home, this might be you.
Do one of these sound like you? There is hope!
Game Plan For "Burn Out" Recovery
It’s essential to replenish your physical and emotional
energy if you feel you are approaching "burn out".
However, you MUST keep moving! In fact, stopping
exercise all together can make your pain and melancholy
If your burn out is due to exercise, just make some changes
in the frequency or intensity of your routine. Or, try
something new. If you walk try swimming, if you run try
dancing, if you weight train try a martial arts class. Just a
minor change to your workout every 4 weeks is effective.
If you are burned out and not exercising than you need to
start. Aim for 30 minutes of movement a day to encourage
blood flow. It can even be broken into short 10 minute
bursts. It will maximize stress relief, refocus your thoughts,
and increase your energy.
In addition, remember that what you put in your body can
have a huge impact on your mood, energy, and recovery.
Even though you may be craving pasta and cookies,
minimizing sugar and refined carbohydrates will keep your
blood sugar level and improve your mental game.
Replacing these foods with protein and omega 3 fatty acids
will give your mood a boost. The best sources that include
both are fish, flax seeds, and nuts.
An End to Burn Out
In summary, you can restore resilience through diet,
movement, rest, and relaxation. It's all about the balance.
Exercising too vigorously can be just as damaging as being too
sedentary. Find some movement that makes you happy and
leaves you feeling energized, but not completely drained.
Then, make it a priority along with some healthy meal planning
and a good nights sleep.
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