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5 Signs That Indicate You Have Exercise Burnout

Signs of exercise burnout. Image via Pexels/Oliver Sjostrom
Signs of exercise burnout. Image via Pexels/Oliver Sjostrom

Exercise burnout is a phenomenon that most fitness enthusiasts are likely to suffer from over the course of their fitness journey, but not many are aware of what it is.

Burnout occurs when you have overexercised. Your muscles may feel overworked, and your central nervous system takes a hit, sending your entire body into a downward spiral. Burnout is generally accompanied by a variety of symptoms, which, if ignored, could lead to serious long-term problems.

A2: We listed the common signs of burnout but it can change from person to person. Practicing self-care, getting enough sleep, eating healthy meals, drinking water, exercise, talking to teachers, friends, family, and seeking professional guidance is always advised #TEARtalk

There are ways around an exercise burnout, of course. Taking a week of rest from working out is a top priority. Other common solutions to a burnout are:

  • Massage therapy
  • Yoga
  • Spa treatments
  • Sauna/hot tub

So getting around it might be simple, but how exactly do we identify when we’re facing a burnout?


5 signs of exercise burnout

Keep an eye out for these common symptoms of exercise burnout, so you can take a break from the intensity before causing any serious damage.

1) Lack of motivation

This may be a common issue for most exercisers. But if you are someone who has been exercising regularly and it is a solid, enjoyable part of your routine, it is likely you may start to feel demotivated. You will likely skip workouts because you’re just “not feeling it”, and perhaps anything about exercise will make you feel uncomfortable.

2) Impaired performance

So maybe you are still making it to the gym and pushing yourself. But are you able to perform the same way? Are your weights or reps progressing, or do you feel like you’re stagnating? During a burnout, it’s common that your muscles may be too fatigued. This could impair your performance.

Your performance may be impaired. Image via Pexels/Julia Larson
Your performance may be impaired. Image via Pexels/Julia Larson

3) Mood swings

Burnouts can have mental effects as well. Your mood is likely to be largely affected by burnout, and why wouldn’t it be? Your drive to exercise is reduced, so your activity levels go down. Moreover, it’s surely frustrating to not see progress in your workouts. This can be a major demotivating factor.

4) Constant fatigue

Your energy levels can take a massive hit when you’re experiencing a burnout. You may find it harder to get out of bed and feel tired a lot earlier than you used to. Even if you do force yourself to work out, you find yourself feeling drained really quickly.

You may feel fatigued. Image via Pexels/Andres Ayrton
You may feel fatigued. Image via Pexels/Andres Ayrton

5) Constant soreness

Your muscles may feel perpetually tired or weak during a burnout and will take longer to recover. Plus, if you’re still pushing yourself to exercise, your muscles really won’t recover, and you may end injuring yourself for a long term.


Yes, exercise burnouts are the worst! But be sure to keep an eye out for the signs, so you can act on them before they really start to weigh you down. Don't forget that your journey to fitness also involves plenty of rest, no matter how well you seem to be performing. So don't be afraid to take a break. Stay safe and eat well!

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Edited by Sabine Algur
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