Is Overtraining Just Some Mythical Bullsh*t?

Posted by Jason Ferruggia on March 11, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-03-11 at 9.49.55 AMNo, it’s not.

Overtraining is real and does exist. It’s what holds back the majority of people who can’t get results.

But to really reach a true, deep state of it is way harder than most people think.

We, in the fitness industry, use the term because it’s easy to understand and it helps us guide you in the right direction.

Skinny hardgainers actually do need to “fear” overtraining when they’re starting out because it gets them on the right path. We don’t want those guys doing three hundred sets a week and training for two hours at a clip. That definitely won’t work.

But I don’t want you to live in terrifying fear of overtraining forever.

If you’re training properly, eating right and resting like you should your recovery ability should be good enough to get you through 3-4 strength training sessions per week and a sprint workout or two.

In my old zero-work-capacity, I’m-doomed-to-be-a-hardgainer-for-life days I could only handle three thirty-minute workouts per week or I’d be crushed.

Then I manned the fuck up and slowly and intelligently increased my weekly workload to include a fourth day of training and a couple of sprint sessions. By doing so in a very deliberate and well thought out manner I got to the point where, in my late thirties, I can do triple the weekly volume that I used to and be fully recovered from it without issues.

I can condition or do some yoga or mobility training in the morning and train in the afternoon five days a week without a problem.

For me, training is stress relief.

Training keeps me sane and focused, helps my productivity, improves my mood and is just damn right fun. It’s one of my favorite things to do.

So there’s no way in hell I’m gonna do some type of training five days a week.  Even if I were guaranteed better results I still wouldn’t do it. My entire life would suffer. To me that’s actually more important than the weight on the bar, believe it or not.

Just the very act of getting in there, straining and pushing myself to the limit makes me feel more alive and improves every aspect of my existence.

People are always looking for excuses and the easy way out. They want to be told that anything more than a couple short workouts per week will be more than they can handle. And for some of you that may be true.

But don’t let the fear of doing something you love, like playing some beach volleyball or running some hill sprints stop you from enjoying life.