I have a confession to make.. it is hard for me to wake-up in the morning, and by late afternoon I am totally tired even without any strenuous workout, by the time I reach home, I have no mood to hit to gym.
For the better part of my life being tired, I had accepted it as a part of my busy schedule and lots of travelling in different time-zones.
The word “Fatigue” was in my mind, but it was actually killing my health and fitness goal. Fatigue often presents itself as a feeling of being overworked or having low energy for daily tasks. It is common for people experiencing fatigue to feel that no amount of sleep or rest will help energize them. Not only does it impact your energy level, but you also feel emotionally drained and fuzzy in your thoughts.
I decided to take some professional help for fatigue.
The first step is to understand to source of fatigue:
The 1st and the foremost reason for fatigue is bad sleeping patterns, or lack of sleep due to any underlying medical conditions like sleep apnea, but there are many other contributing factors for Fatigue too:
- Excessive consumption of Alcohol.
- Eating habits or underlying food allergy.
- Medical / recreational drug use.
- Excessive physical activities.
- Complete lack of physical activities.
There is a difference periodically tired due to busy day at work and being tired almost every day. The latter is sometimes referred to as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and is a clinical condition where fatigue has lasted longer than 6 months.
If your fatigue has lasted more than 3 / 4 months, I recommend you to take professional help, talk to a medical personal, understand the reason and get it fixed.
Many of us face non-clinical fatigue, it is typical to experience forgetfulness, slower reaction times, feeling lethargic, and a general state of grumpiness.
Is fatigue holding your fitness goals?
Now you had seen above how fatigue affects your daily routine, imagine what it is doing to your fitness and health.
You need to know the balance between fatigue and your fitness goals.
Fatigue is actually a normal part of the training process; however, as fatigue is prolonged, it becomes known as “overreaching”, or worse, overtraining. Both are when there is an imbalance between exercise stress and recovery from that stress. Overreaching is common in athletes, generally only requiring a short recovery time (no more than a couple weeks), and can even lead to improved performance. However overreaching can become overtraining and often results in injury. Recovery can take months and even years with overtraining.
When you reduce the amount of rest and recovery between workouts, or add in more training, your body cannot bounce back as easily in the same amount of time. The weight on the bench press feels heavier, you feel sluggish in your run, and the first round of spin class really takes a toll. You are fatigued!
If you are trying to make gains in your health and fitness, it is critical to understand that what you do outside the gym in the other 23 hours of your day matters! No matter if you are a weekend warrior trying to get back in shape or a well-trained athlete, fatigue and overreaching impacts us all based upon our own level of fitness and abilities.
Take Charge and Fight Fatigue
You can’t escape fatigue from your daily life and exercise efforts, does it mean you cannot achieve your fitness goals?
The Answer is a BIG NO.
There are lot of ways to fight fatigue, let’s explore some:
Start Physical Exercise
If we want to keep fatigue in check as we pursue our health and fitness goals, our fitness plan itself can help us accomplish this. It turns out that exercise helps us increase brain function, reduce our risk of stress and anxiety, improve our mood, and helps keep us mentally sharp.
Remember that fatigue affects you in the exact opposite way: it zaps your energy, leaves you feeling fuzzy, and dampens your decision-making capabilities.
A review of research studies on the effects of exercise on the brain health and function highlights that regular exercise helps prevent fatigue from negatively impacting memory and decision making. In summary, working on your fitness helps combat against mental blocks.
No substitute for Sleep
Most of knows this and most of us have read about it and it is not a buzz word too, the importance of sleep to combat fatigue.
You might have heard that we all need 8 hours of sleep to wake up good and hearty, research has also shown the same. I know some of you might not need your 8 hours, but check for yourself, are you fatigued throughout the day?
If you are struggling to make it through your afternoon and lack the energy to make it over to the gym, poor sleep might be the culprit.
If you want to combat fatigue and make gains in your fitness plan, sleep is a critical tool.
What you eat matters
Food is fuel for your body, choose wisely. Eating greasy and consuming junk food, drinking alcohol, and having an inconsistent diet all contribute to fatigue. I guess we all know the being tired after a plate of “Chole Bhaturey”.
The foods we eat absolutely have an effect on our fatigue levels by way of affecting our hormones and blood glucose levels. Choosing the right foods to feed consistently throughout the day will help you manage your blood glucose, and thus combat fatigue.
You love snaking, try this… almonds, walnuts, chia seeds, spinach salads, pumpkin seeds, or berries. These foods contain healthy Omega-3 fats, protein, or low glycemic carbohydrates to help you keep your energy levels more steady.
Parents if you kids suffer from fatigue, just remember a tired kid is not a sick kid. Some causes of fatigue can be treated at home, while others may require a doctor visit.
I have given you some of the ways you can fight fatigue. Since there is no excuse of I am being tired, you can achieve your Health and Fitness goals, but do you have one?
Buying a gym membership and going to gym and doing workout or running on roads is a good start for fitness but to continue it further, you need goals.
With fitness goals, they will be specific to your interests, such as: increasing strength levels, improving endurance for races and marathons, completing a fitness test or activity, or simply participating in recreational activities a specific amount of days per week.
It is important to remember that with fatigue, there are many factors that you can control when it comes to preventing or correcting the onset of fatigue. Your health and fitness goals depend on it.
Enjoy happy, healthy and fatigue free workout.