T Nation

The Truth About Overtraining

the phrase pops up all over the place, and i’ve been blindly following it until now, but what’s the real deal? with all these HFT programs and the real world results of some athletes i’m really starting to question this dogma.

in my experience i’ve really responded to plain old training more. i can see how training hard every day would be taxing on the whole CNS. i also don’t train a muscle while it is still recovering.

so what have you guys experienced with response to “overtraining”? myth? or not?

I’ve learned that it’s highly individualized.

Yes, some people do overtrain easily. There are others that are monsters and can work hard and long with no signs of overtraining. And there are people somewhere in the middle.

You just have to figure it out and find the best way to train for your type.

I used to believe that one couldn’t overtrain. I had just started lifting again and had been going at a 6 days a week (legs/chest/back/legs/arms/shoulders/and rest) split. I continued this for 2 years maybe a month or 2 more. By the end my core lifts had gone down, I went from being able to put up 360 on bench to barely getting 300.

I am now doing DC training, just started it two months ago. Its a 3 day split and my lifts are going up like never before.

i tried doing tbt 6 days a week,that lasted 3 weeks before i couldnt get up one morning.Sadly,lifting and testing your body is trail and error,get ready for the pain.

Overtraining is definitely not a myth. The bodies ability to adapt is not infinite. There is a real point where stress from training will lead to illness, injury, loss of performance and tissue catabolism and only rest or less intense training will give relief.

I rarely think overtraining is what causes people to fail to progress towards their goal so in that sense it is a myth.

Most people that are overtraining are truly overtraining but the real reason is actually that they are undereating/eating poorly or using a stupid program unsuited for them or living a lifestyle that simply causes too much stress.

In this case training less will in no way cause them to get closer to their goals even though they are “overtraining”. The weak link in their progress is actually something else.

i overtrain pretty easilly. its real, lol

I overtrained…mind you it took a while, but I did it. But, it really depends on the inidividual. Of course, HFT and all that other wonderful stuff is a good idea, short term, because most people are used to bodypart splits.

I have been hitting Waterbury’s bodybuiding’s next frontier pretty hard for quite a few weeks and I think I ended up overtraining some tendons, if that’s possible. I’ve been getting tons of sleep and a lot of food, but I was forced to take time off when tendons in my elbow and knee were so sore that I couldn’t move them.

Hopefully I heal soon and I think I’m going to return to a body part split and try HSS-100. I have never had problems with my joints until I started doing intense full body workouts several times a week.

Overtraining is certainly real, but you can do a heck of a lot of volume without reaching it if you are smart about varying your intensity and careful to avoid too much maxing out. The other factor that makes a big difference is recovery strategies, eg icing muscles after workouts, contrast showers, light workouts 12-24 hrs after heavy sessions to improve blood flow, ART and AAS (for those who are into them).

this is interesting…

i guess that’s why Chad recommends such frequent unloading weeks on his program…