Workout less to lose fat? What?! Maybe. STRESS is a physique killer and a progress-slower. If you are over-training, your body is releasing a higher level of a hormone called cortisol, otherwise known as the "stress hormone." Although it is important at healthy levels, stress causes these levels to rise, which works against the body.
Negative effects include compromised thyroid function, blood sugar imbalances, lower immunity, decrease in muscle tissue, and even an increase in abdominal fat. In order to keep cortisol at normal levels, you need a rest period, not just for muscle repair, but to allow hormones such as cortisol to normalize. Without a relaxation period, you can put your body into a state of chronic stress, and no gains can be made there.
Access your situation. Could too much stress from your workouts actually be hampering your progress? Or too much daily stress? Learn to relax your body and take required rest days. This isn't slacking, this is good fitness, and life, strategy.
by Heather Frey,
Founder and President of SmashFit.com, Fitness Strategist, Writer, Artist, CPT, National Figure Competitor
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