Published on February 02, 2016

Runners Should Avoid Overtraining

By Robert Weiss, DPM, Podiatry

Woman StretchingThis is the time of the year when you should reduce your training session. Race schedules tend to slow down and it is time to give your body a chance to recover from any lingering injuries. Exercising before an injury has healed may not only worsen it, may actually decrease the chance of recovery.

Runners who continue tough training sessions year-round will fall victim to staleness, which creates fatigue, worsens performance, and can lead to depression. Staleness and extreme fatigue may be associated with iron deficiency. Iron deficiency can also be present if you are anemic.

In some cases, the blood count may be normal but the body can be completely out of iron stores, which are necessary for the body’s cellular makeup to function properly. It takes at least two months of daily iron supplements to build these stores back to normal. If you are not sure if you have an iron deficit, a serum ferritin blood test can be done by your physician.

Overtraining can also bring on vitamin deficiencies. I recommend that a daily intake of Vitamin C, as well as Vitamin B Complex, be taken in heavy training sessions. There can also be a decreased supply of potassium and magnesium in the blood levels when fatigue sets in during heavy training session.

So, for the winter, take a week off or cut down your mileage and learn to keep in touch with your body. Listen to your body-physically, mentally, and spiritually.