Eat enough nutritionally dense calories! This is one of the hardest concepts for women, in particular, to get their minds around. Our bodies require about 60 calories an hour per pound of body weight to function lying still listening to music. We need plenty of high quality protein, fat and carb (not grains) sources so the millions of our body’s cells that die every second are rebuilt from good “material”.
Hydrate with enough pure water! Gatorade, bottled sports drinks and vitamin waters do not replace electrolytes, minerals or vitamins. They hop the body up on sugar, high fructose corn syrup, refined sodium chloride, sucralose, aspartame and synthetic vitamins. Our bodies have no idea what any of that “stuff” is. How well does your car engine run with sugar poured in the tank? A pinch of unprocessed Celtic sea salt in that water will supply the body with the trace minerals it needs and allows the water to better permeate the cell walls. CHEK Practitioners recommend half your body weight in ounces of water every day, starting with about a third of that first thing in the morning.
Get adequate rest between training sessions! Fatigue and pain (the body’s idiot light) are signals that we need to back off, not tough it out to get stronger. This really archaic thinking simply won’t get anyone to the levels they want to get to.
Low levels of exercise during rest time, known as “active recovery”, can help recover between sessions. Training intensities which don’t require open mouth breathing stimulate the parasympathetic system, which is anabolic (builds up) in nature.
Unless all the aspects of your lifestyle (nutrition, hydration, work/relationship stressors and rest cycles) are optimal 80% of the time, moderate exercise is best for those of us who aren’t professional or elite level competitors.
Most of elite competitors are over trained and ill nourished. If that isn’t the case, why do so many die young and compete chronically injured?
Fitness and wellness should be sensible, fun and invigorating, not a test of how far we can go for how long on the least amount of nutritionally dense calories.
A final thought for avoiding over trianing and being healthy while getting fit: is your current routine something you can do for the rest of your life? Most people find they can’t stick with their programs because they’re doing too much too soon and they literally get burned out.