X is for eXtreme Fitness

Everyone has to stretch for a good X word when you do a list of alphabet tips and in our case, we’re doing exercise tips. I could have gone X is for eXercise, but eXtreme fitness is a topic we don’t talk about here as often as we might. The idea of extreme fitness is that you push yourself to your limit during every single workout that you do.

The idea is based on no pain, no gain. Extreme fitness buffs want to feel the pain from their workout, believing that without that pain they won’t achieve their fitness goals. The danger of extreme fitness is that it can lead to over training, especially when amateurs just pound pavement and pump muscle day in and day out without allowing for recovery or alternation of muscle groups. The idea that more is better is just a bad idea and you can get fit and get a great workout without punishing yourself in some brutal workout.

Too Much Of Anything Is Bad

Just like you shouldn’t stuff yourself on a diet of chocolate and soda day in and day out, so you shouldn’t be pumping iron day in and day out without proper recovery. It’s also important to realize that when you punish yourself in these kinds of workouts that you run the risk of injury (which can lay you up and defeat your fitness plan) or exhaustion (which can lay you up and defeat your fitness plan).

Reactions to Extreme Fitness

When you engage in extreme fitness, your body goes through a few specific things:

  • Damaged muscles – this is normal because the point of strength training is to tear up your muscles so that during repair (24 to 48 hours), they grow stronger
  • Shock – if you don’t give your body the time it needs to repair itself, you can create a shock or alarm in your body
  • It will try to adapt – pushing past the ‘pain’ may give you a momentary boost, but the constant damage can lead you to overcompensating with other muscles that can lead to injury in their muscles
  • Exhaustion or collapse – you may begin to feel ill or exhausted, not only are you combating pain, but also the need of your body to collapse because it will demand recovery

Generally by the time you get to the exhaustion stage, chances are increased by 50% that you will abandon all future workouts with a defeatist attitude. So if you’re a beginner or intermediate level exercise buff – avoid the eXtreme workout – instead, make sure you take the time to alternate your workouts to focus on different muscle groups and take the time for proper recovery. Your body and your workout will thank you in the long run.

Related Articles:

T is for Total Body Workout

20 Minutes A Day Can Change Your Life

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About Heather Long

Heather Long is 35 years old and currently lives in Wylie, Texas. She has been a freelance writer for six years. Her husband and she met while working together at America Online over ten years ago. They have a beautiful daughter who just turned five years old. She is learning to read and preparing for kindergarten in the fall. An author of more than 300 articles and 500+ web copy pieces, Heather has also written three books as a ghostwriter. Empty Canoe Publishing accepted a novel of her own. A former horse breeder, Heather used to get most of her exercise outside. In late 2004, early 2005 Heather started studying fitness full time in order to get herself back into shape. Heather worked with a personal trainer for six months and works out regularly. She enjoys shaking up her routine and checking out new exercises. Her current favorites are the treadmill (she walks up to 90 minutes daily) and doing yoga for stretching. She also performs strength training two to three times a week. Her goals include performing in a marathon such as the Walk for Breast Cancer Awareness or Team in Training for Lymphoma research. She enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience through the fitness and marriage blogs.