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Can You Work Out Too Much? Finding The Optimal Training Frequency For Your Goals

Woman lifting weight

Working out regularly is great for your health, but sometimes, it can be easy to go overboard with it. Despite how motivated you might be or how badly you want to lose fat, more time in the gym is not necessarily better, and working out too much can actually be detrimental to your health and have the opposite effect of what you want.

Working out too much can take a significant toll on your mental and physical well-being, not to mention it can cause you a ton of health problems along the way. However, you also don’t want to workout less than you should, as this will also cost you your results. For that reason, it's crucial to find the optimal training frequency for your life that will lead to the best results without going too far in either direction. 

In this blog, we will cover some ways that working out too much can negatively impact your life, why you need to take rest days seriously, and what an optimal workout plan might look like to get you on track for achieving your goals. 

1. Working out too much can limit your ability to build muscle 

Woman lifting two weights

When you’re trying to build muscle, two main things occur to increase mass: your muscles first break down and then they need to be rebuilt. The breaking down part happens when you’re training, and the rebuilding part occurs during recovery to form bigger and stronger muscles. This process is necessary to build muscle and occurs each time you train and recover.  

However, when you overwork your muscles, you aren’t allowing for adequate time for them to rest and rebuild in between, which means all the work you put in isn’t going to help your muscles grow. Not to mention, when they’re overworked, and you keep training regardless, your muscles can become even smaller and weaker as a result and can increase your chances for injury. 

So, you may be putting more into your workout, lifting heavier weights, and working out more days a week, but you’ll never see the results you want without adequate recovery time. If you want results, you have to be able to train optimally and then give yourself time to rest in between. If you keep pushing yourself without rest, you won’t ever get there. 

2. It can halt your fat loss progress

Woman measuring waist

Next, exercising too much can also affect your ability to lose fat. For example, many people think that the more cardio they do, the better, and the more fat they’ll lose, but that’s not true. When you do too much cardio and don’t give yourself time to rest, it will shut your hormones down and boost your cortisol levels, making it so you actually store more body fat. Not to mention, it can also cause your muscles to weaken and increase your risk for general health problems.

Truthfully, it’s not ideal to do a lot of cardio in any capacity, even if you have a fat loss goal, as most of your benefit for fat loss will come from nutrition. So make sure you aren’t overdoing it and are taking plenty of time to rest in between to keep your cortisol levels down and your body healthy. 

If you need help with your nutrition for optimizing fat loss or help knowing the right amount of cardio you should do, try our FREE 7-day trial, and we can get you on track to smash your goals without the stress. 

3. It can make you burnout and become unmotivated 

Distressed woman setting with weights in gym

Next, aside from the adverse effects that working out too much can have on fat loss and muscle building, you’re also going to burn yourself out more physically and mentally when you work out too much. You’ll get less mentally excited about your workout, and it will become harder to motivate yourself to get up and do it when the time comes. This can not only lead to burnout but also to you falling off track and staying off track for a while. 

You need balance in your schedule to succeed in any fitness routine. When you have balance, you know what days you’re going to the gym and for how long, and you can plan and get motivated for it. You also have time to live your life and do other things, which will help you maintain a better balance in your well-being overall.

So, always make sure you’re taking time off each week to rest and enjoy other activities in your life. This will have you returning to the gym more motivated and rejuvenated than before and will increase your chances of achieving your goals. 

4. It increases your chance of injury 

Woman holding knee injury

Lastly, on top of everything else, if you work out too much, you’re more likely to injure yourself. This can come from overexertion of your muscles without giving them proper rest time and can result in joint problems, pulled muscles, strains, and other significant injuries. This can make it hard for you to live your everyday life and also make it hard for you to get back to the gym. 

If you’re noticing an increase in injuries even with proper form, this is a sign that you’re pushing yourself too much and need a break. You likely also need to reevaluate your exercise plan and adjust it to better accommodate your life, which is something a coach can help you with.

Overall, make sure you’re giving yourself plenty of time to rest in between to avoid injuring yourself.


To sum it up, you can absolutely work out too much, and when you do, it can be detrimental to your health in many ways. The most important thing is to find a balance between training and recovery and always listen to your body and rest when needed. 

For most people, around 3-5 days a week of exercise, working out for 45 minutes to an hour maximum is ideal. Any more over that could increase your chance of burnout, loss of results, and injury. Of course, everyone is different, so getting yourself a good coach who can set up a plan for you, answer all your questions, and ensure you’re maximizing your results without overdoing it is essential.

At TeamFFLEX, we have a program that's going to be coming out soon specifically designed for this that is 3 days a week of training at 45 minutes each, perfect for reaching your goals and helping you stay on track without the risks. If you want to get on the waitlist to be notified when we release this program, enter your email below.

Above else, pace yourself, prioritize rest, and get on the right plan with the right coach who can help you with your goals, and you’ll reach them in no time. 

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