Originally Posted by dealt_with
That's not true at all. It's typically out of shape people who become very motivated who overtrain. The less fit you are the easier it is to get there. Motivated people with perfectionist qualities are the people who are most likely to get themselves into an overtrained state. Having a poor diet or lack of sleep may be a cause or effect of overtraining, overtraining is very complex. If you lift weights at a gym it's very hard to overtrain but in a sport like boxing it's very easy. People don't periodise or progress their training properly and try to work as hard as possible as often as possible. I think overtraining is more common than anyone realises.
For the OP:
Overtraining is the point where the athlete starts to experience physiological maladaptaions and chronic performance decrements. There's the sympathetic and parasympathetic forms of overtraining. Symptoms include - Impaired physical performance, Decreased appetite, Anorexia and weight loss, Increase in waking pulse of > 5 b.p.m., Altered metabolism, Abnormal rise in HR on standing, Postural hypotension or hypertension, Muscle and joint pains, Immunosuppression (head colds, allergies), Insomnia, Depression, Increased nocturnal fluid intake, reduced vigour, increased tension, anxiety and exercise dependence.
There's a few hypothesis for its genesis - Neuroendocrine changes, Energy metabolism, amino acid and monamine metabolism, immunological dysfunction and nitric oxide metabolism with neuroendocrine probably being the most important factor.
Resting heart rate is a good way to determine if you're overtrained if you know what you're usually at.
Overtraining is even more damaging to fitness than detraining. To treat it reduce training intensity for several days, rest completely for three to five days, seek counselling, eat sufficient carbohydrate to prevent glycogen depletion and prevent overtraining by alternating easy, moderate, and hard training. You might laugh at seek counselling but there is a strong psychological element to it, the harder you try to push through it and tough it out the worse it gets. Chronic fatigue syndrome is on the same spectrum as overtraining, this isn't something to be taken lightly.
Every professional sports team these days hand out forms to their athletes daily to record how they feel, this includes psychological, physical and general wellbeing. If an athlete is stressed out about something away from sport it will affect the quality of their training, stress is stress whether it's from activity or emotions your body doesn't differentiate between the two and it has the same physiological effect. Getting excited about something is stressful as well, it doesn't have to be negative to take a toll on you.
Recovery is very important, I'm not saying you're necessarily overtrained but you may be getting to that point. The point you may be at is sometimes a goal for an athlete, the athlete then cuts back training and gets an increased training effect. That's called overreaching. There's a thin line between overreaching and overtraining so you should err on the side of caution.
Monitor how you feel and don't be afraid to take some time off and relax. You're not being lazy or a *****, your subjective feelings are very real and it makes no difference, what you perceive has physiological/physical effects so don't let anybody say you're being lazy. And whatever you do don't try to train your way out of it, the longer you overtrain for the more fitness you'll lose and the longer it will take to get back where you were.