Balance is the Key: Are You Working Out Too Much?




We like to simplify everything into easy equations so that we can understand them in simpler terms. Unfortunately, in the world of health and fitness, one plus one does not always equal two. More exercise does not always equal greater physical results.

I do not work out as much as most “gym rats”, but I produce greater results long-term

diminishing return graph
How much time and energy do you invest?

When it comes to health and fitness, you will generally increase your results when you decide to focus on quality over quantity. The law of diminishing return states that the more you work, the less you get compared to the amount of effort produced. If you ride the optimal line of cost and return, you can achieve your goals with minimal effort. Do not make this an excuse to become lazy. Learn to channel your energy into the most beneficial exercises and other aspects of your health and fitness to get more out your efforts. After learning how to optimally train for better results, take your excess willpower out of working out and apply it to other areas of your life.

In life, there is no excuse to not challenge yourself as much as possible, but for maximum satisfaction, you should balance all areas you choose to challenge yourself to be more well-rounded. To work out efficiently, you need to focus on the long term instead of the short term. Most people put all their willpower into the short term goal and try to push themselves way too hard; this mindset causes people to drop their goals completely. If you want to produce lasting results and maintain them, you have to put in enough effort to make long-term progress, but not too much to the point where you wear yourself out.

It is all about quality of life and finding a happy balance between work and friends and family.

-Philip Green Tweet this quote!

Here is the secret to achieve your health and fitness goals with minimal work

First of all, you need to realize working out itself is not the only place you should be focusing on. Health and fitness goals are achieved through a balance of your workouts, nutrition, and lifestyle. If you put 60% of your effort into working out, 20% into nutrition, and 20% into your lifestyle, you are not going to achieve as much as you could. Balance your effort in all three categories for maximum results. You cannot make up for bad nutrition and a bad lifestyle with more exercise. Another tip is togive up isolation exercises. Isolation exercises have their time and place in fitness programs, but they are very specific. Unless it is necessary to keep a certain isolation movement, you should focus most of your effort on big compound exercises (deadlifts, squats, shoulder press, bench press, etc.); your body will respond much more to them.

overtraining graphProgress, whether it is aesthetics or performance, is made quickly with a balance of anabolism (building) and catabolism (breaking down).Exercising is stress on the body, just like under-sleeping or working.The way that exercise benefits our bodies is that it is a short burst of catabolism that causes our bodies to go into healthy anabolism where our body improves itself. If we are continually over-catabolic, it is counter productive and can even decrease our health and performance; this is sometimes referred to as overtraining. You must adjust you workouts to stimulate improvement, but not break you down to the point of overtraining.

Implement these lessons into your workouts

If you are motivated then by all means train hard, but keep in mind that it is still possible to work too hard. Make sure you can keep up your motivation long-term, and record your results to make sure you continue to progress. If you stop progressing or regress, you could be overtraining. Train smart.



Top Photo Courtesy of  Trening