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I Seem To Be Getting Weaker! Why?
I am 17 years old, 6ft, 180 lbs and have been weightlifting for a year now. I recently came off a wrist injury and am now lifting as hard as possible. My bench max is 240 lbs. When I do an actual workout I do 135 as my warm up, then move to 185, 205, and then 225. Lately I have been reading up on cortisol and overtraining and it has me worried. I usually do 185 ten times with some effort, but now I have to struggle to get it ten times. When I usually do 205 I get it about four times and now it's like twice, and I used to finish it off with 225 twice now it's once or I breakdown. I usually get sore for five days after my chest workout. It seems to me that I am getting weaker. What do you think?
The answer to your question is very easy, yes, SOMETHING is causing you to actually perform worse. What some forget is that performance can be hindered by variables other than overtraining.
- Is your nutrition carefully being monitored so that you can properly recover from your training?
- Do you sleep enough during the night so that you are well rested in the morning?
- Do you cycle your workout so that your body has an opportunity to avoid stagnation and overtraining symptoms?
It is wise to always begin looking at the obvious. The fact that you become so very sore all the time does make me think that you could well be overtraining. Soreness is usually the result of doing something different in your training or doing too much. If the soreness persists I would say it would more likely be the latter.
Solution? Well, start by analyzing how long your workout takes you. A nice rule of thumb is that your working sets of your training should run no longer than 45 minutes to an hour. Secondly, try to determine some short-term goals for yourself. See if you are on track to obtain these goals and if so, then you know your training is appropriate. Also, judge how you feel on a daily basis, if you are constantly feeling fatigued and worn down then you still may be doing the wrong things for yourself.