Hitting the gym when you're exhausted

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning' started by SouthernGal, Jan 14, 2010.

  1. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    Here's my situation.

    In the past 5 months, I've doubled my workload here at work. We lost someone from the department, and about 80% of her work, I picked up. I have so many deadlines to meet due to these new reports that I literally have to schedule them all on my calendar to find time to complete them. The work is tedious and involves numbers and mentally drains me. Most of the time I come home and don't even want to watch TV or talk to anyone all because I'm so tired from work.

    I get about 8 hours of sleep a night and I'm working out (using weights) at least 3 times a week. I also push cardio in there in the days in between for at least 40 or so minutes. I have been sleeping VERY hard here lately.

    Do you guys continue to go even when you're so exhausted mentally and physically you just don't think you can keep going? Where's the line on this? I upped my weight the other day and honestly as tired as I am I'm wondering if I'm going to be able to continue to go at the same again tonight without hurting myself.
     
  2. BCR

    BCR BIGASS!!!!

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    Sometimes a break is justified.

    Overdoing it too often can tax your Central Nervous System and immune system.

    So skipping a day here and there won't hurt. Especially if you're so tired you fear injuring yourself.

    But it sounds like your schedule won't let up anytime soon, so this may cause long term issues.

    Remember, YOUR health comes first above anything. Its easy for an outsider to say your workload is what needs to lessen, so change it. But that is the culprit that needs to change. Have you talked to your boss about this?

    I'd be more concerned with being physically exhausted versus mentally exhausted concerning your workouts.

    A good workout can take the strain off your brain. But if you are exhausted it can lead to injury.
     

  3. Green_Manelishi

    Green_Manelishi Knicker Knotter

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    If you are able to get enough sleep I'd suggest continuing to "gym" even if exhausted. Assuming getting enough sleep I frequently find going to the gym will provide a boost of energy. However, if I/you did not get sufficient sleep I'd be very careful where weights are involved. To sum up, lack of sleep is not conducive to recovery from workout.
     
  4. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    Thanks for the replies.

    There has been a new hire in the last few weeks. She's still not up to speed. I've been told that some of her work will be taken from the tasks that I and a few others are doing currently. So I am hoping that the load will be lightened...I just don't know when.

    I convinced myself on Tuesday to go and up the weight. I wasn't way sore the next day but this morning (and right now) I'm pretty sleepy. I'm not a huge caffeine junkie either so it isn't like I'm going to drink a cup of coffee and be okay 30 minutes later. In fact, I don't drink that stuff at all.

    I may go tonight and drop back a bit unless I just really feel like I can handle it.
     
  5. BradD

    BradD

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    Because you're still getting 8 hours of sleep, I'd guess that you'll be OK.
     
  6. Eyescream

    Eyescream hates you

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    It's not a bad idea to take a break once in a while. I took a week off (from everything, including work and classes and the gym) back in late June and, while I was climbing the walls the whole time, I realized just how much I needed it.

    It's possible that a couple days off from it is exactly what you need.
     
  7. TurboRocket

    TurboRocket

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    SG,

    How many and what days are you working out? Perhaps do 5 days, with Wed and Sun being rest days - or something like that. Also, have you considered doing some of the sessions in the morning before work? Not sure if that is possible for your schedule.

    8 hours of sleep is definitely good - much more than what I get on average.
     
  8. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    I took last night off and it helped quite a bit. I went to bed VERY early and took something to not only help me sleep but to help get rid of this horrible rash I've developed on one of my arms (it's itchy and angry-looking).

    The class I normally go to 3x a week was cancelled last night and replaced with "Cardio Sculpt" which is a lot like drills for Football or Basketball. I'm not sure I'd have lasted through that class anyway. I'd been doing 6 days a week for exercise, taking only Friday off.

    I'm off Monday but depending upon how much I can catch up and feel refreshed I may go in for Monday MORNING Body Pump (a guy teaches that class :supergrin:) It normally DOES work out better for me to go in the morning but they'd never offered my class in the morning until a few weeks ago.
     
  9. Crossfit1981

    Crossfit1981

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    How about doing a max set of burpees on your lunch break? Just one all out set shouldn't get you to sweaty. IMO, burpees are the ultimate conditioning tool.
     
  10. engineer151515

    engineer151515

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    tagged because this is a common problem for me.
     
  11. BradD

    BradD

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    Wouldn't that be an awfully short workout for most people? Even when I did a lot of burpees and was OK at them, I don't know if I could do many more than 30 in a row without stopping. That'd only be 90 sec. and I'd bet that most trainees can't even do that many.

    I agree with you that burpees are great, BTW.
     
  12. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    UPDATE:
    I've dropped back to doing Body Pump 3x a week (it's an hour long class) plus abs 2x a week and cardio only 1x a week. I'm sleeping soundly and I'm not "dragging the dirt" tired anymore. I've also managed to keep my weight loss gains over the weekend, which in the past has been a real issue for me.

    Friday I had lunch out and ordered grilled mahi mahi on whole wheat. Saturday I splurged and had calzone but only ate half of it. I'm eating lots and lots of veggies.

    I've also developed blood blisters on my hands from class so I got gloves this weekend.

    QUESTION:
    On squats...I keep hearing the woman teaching class saying several things:
    1) that you should be able to see your toes from the squat
    2) weight should be on your heels
    3) chest upright, push butt toward the back, back should be straight

    All the above are true for me, but she keeps claiming my glutes should be burning and they aren't. My LEGS moreso than my butt are. Am I doing something wrong?
     
  13. Cinic

    Cinic Spongy Member

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    Are the squats weighted? Holding dumbbells? Bodyweight only?

    I know I have a hard time getting the posterior chain involved until the weights get higher in a low bar squat. Otherwise it's more quad dominant for me.
     
  14. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    Yes, they are weighted...using a bar (not dumbells). We have people in class doing bodyweight only but I'm not one of them. This is the heaviest weight I use during class (20 pounds).
     
  15. Cinic

    Cinic Spongy Member

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    Come to think of it, my glutes never get that 'burning' feeling. The only way I know I've hit them is that they get sore.
     
  16. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    My glutes have never been sore, but my legs sure have. I asked the girl at work who goes to this class if her rear end was sore and she said no, but that her legs burn during those same exercises. I thought possibly both of us were doing something wrong, which is why I posted this question.

    About the most weight I've seen any girl in there squatting is about 40 pounds. But, for the record, she's not a small girl to begin with. I'd say she's about 5'8" or 5'9" while I'm only 5'3". She's been coming for a while too, way longer than I have.
     
  17. BradD

    BradD

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    It's really, really hard to cause the glutes to feel fatigued and burning compared to quads, at least in my experience. Also, about the only time mine have actually been sore was when just starting a program with low-bar squats. Even then, my adductors and quads were extremely sore and I could barely feel any soreness in my glutes.

    Soreness seems to come from slow eccentric movements. For example, with walking lunges, one doesn't want to slam the kneecap into the ground, so that last little part of the decent grinds slowly. Soreness is little, if any indicator of progress, best I can tell. Like Rippetoe says, stapling oneself hurts also, but that doesn't mean it's helpful. It's more of an indicator of doing something one's not adapted to or grinding the eccentric part. For example, I did very heavy (for me) deadlifts yesterday and my back isn't sore at all. Not stiff either--not even a tiny bit when I first woke up. Actually, I went from <100 lb on DL to low to mid 300s for reps and I don't think my low back was ever sore along the way. There's no eccentric part to the DL because I drop it pretty fast. My adductors still get sore after squats because I'm grinding that last part of the decent trying to make sure I break parallel.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2010
  18. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    If your "low bar" squat and what I think of when you say that are the same, then we do plenty in this class. They make us take the squat down, then hold at a low to halfway up position for a count of 4. Then we come all the way back up again, and go down for a count of 8 in the "low" position. From there we come back up and then we do singles. The low squats make me burn, especially after that 8 count. I think this is repeated 3 times during the song for that group.

    Saturday the instructor was on the lookout for bad form. She gave verbal commands on what exercise and positon was next but came around and tapped people who didn't show correct form to show correct position to them individually. I didn't get tapped but wondered why my glutes weren't burning.
     
  19. dotsun

    dotsun Shark Stomper

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    When she has you do squats, how far apart are your feet?
     
  20. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    About shoulder length. Maybe slightly more, but not much.