Updated 09 October 2018

5 signs you’re suffering from 'over-training syndrome'

Feeling flu-ish? You could be overdoing the exercise.

It’s tough to give exercise your all – and get excited about it, nogal – when you’re plagued by niggles and injury. Here’s how to recognise that you’re over-trained…

1. You feel flu-ish

“Overtraining leads to burnout which is horrible! You have flu-like symptoms due to adrenal fatigue,” says Aneeka Buys, Virgin Active master trainer and the brains behind the Women’s Health Shedding For The Wedding exercise plan. At the burnout stage, don’t focus on the numbers, focus on how you feel and do as much as you can, she advises. Push to a point where you feel comfortable, but still challenged.

Read more: We tested affordable running shoes for under R400… and they work!

2. You’re exhausted – but you can’t sleep

Other symptoms of burnout are decreased immunity and lightheadedness, says Buys.

Note: Turmeric helps to regulate the immune system – and that’s just one of its many superpowers. Add it to meals for a natural body boost.

3. You’re miserable to be around

Over-trained athletes can become moody and easily irritated and sometimes even depressed, says running coach Sean Tait of Off The Mark Training.

Read more: The 3 cardio moves that’ll get you leaner legs faster

4. You don’t rest, aka over-training…

“Sleep is an important ingredient in ensuring that your body is able to perform optimally,” says S.W.E.A.T. 1 000 co-founder and trainer Paul Rothschild. “Your body needs rest for your muscles to repair and recover.”

5. You’re struggling to fit everything in

“If you analyse the types of athletes suffering from over-training, it’s often multi-sport athletes,” says Tait. “They’re trying to train for two or three sports at the same time and this puts their body more at risk of incurring over-training syndrome.” Pick a chilled hobby instead.

This article was originally published on

Image credit: iStock 


Live healthier

Lifestyle »

E-cigarettes: Here are five things to know

E-cigarettes have become hugely popular in the past decade, but a rash of vaping-linked deaths and illnesses in the US is feeding caution about a product that's already banned in some places.

Allergy »

Ditch the itch: Researchers find new drug to fight hives

A new drug works by targeting an immune system antibody called immunoglobulin E, which is responsible for the allergic reaction that causes hives.