The only Health and Fitness blog you need!

How Much Cardio Is Too Much? 7 Signs You’re Overdoing It

How Much Cardio Is Too Much

Many people have a love-hate relationship with cardio. While some people find cardio to be sheer torment, for others, it offers a terrific sweat-inducing and heart-pumping activity. It can be satisfying when you are in the moment and then when the cardio produces amazing results. However, many of you may feel like you are not doing enough and will try to overdo it.

So, how much cardio is too much? When you overdo a cardio workout to the point of exhaustion without any rest to achieve the desired results faster. Overdoing cardio might cause you to gradually lose muscle that you may have built up through other types of physical activity. This only results in sore muscles in the muscle groups you are targeting, as well as in the other parts of the body that have nothing to do with the workout. Now, that sounds serious. The following are the symptoms experienced when you overdo your cardio workouts.

You Feel Tired Too Soon And Too Often

How Much Cardio Is Too Much

Despite a good night’s sleep, you may not feel rested because excessive exercise raises your body’s cortisol levels, which are responsible for stress. When it is time for bed, these hormones may keep you awake and affect the quality of your sleep. The levels of cortisol are necessary during the day and lower by night. Make sure to work out in an adequate amount in the morning or afternoon.

Workouts Only Become Harder As You Keep Going

Ideally, any workout becomes easier when weeks pass by. But, when you feel like the workout is becoming harder, then this is another sign that you are overdoing it. You did not get enough rest for the next day’s workout.

Every once in a while people do face a bad workout day which is absolutely normal. However, if you see that this is occurring repeatedly, you may be overtraining and have reached a point where you are working too much.

You Can’t Seem To Push The Soreness Away

How Much Cardio Is Too Much
Corey Jenkins

Many people have the impression that becoming sore after a workout indicates that you worked hard and had good and effective exercise. Normally, if you start a workout and work the muscles that have been hibernating or carry extra weight than usual, you will feel what is known as DOMS or delayed onset muscle soreness.

Small muscular soreness in these cases can be quite normal. If the soreness is constant and is not going away means your body is unable to adapt to the workout and you are overworking your body. The constant soreness is a message that your body is asking you to take it easier and slower to relieve the strain you are exerting on it.

The Motivation To Continue Starts To Run Out

Starting a cardio workout requires a tremendous amount of motivation. So, when you find yourself losing the will to continue the routine for some time, take it as another sign of overdoing the cardio. It is natural to have bad days or days when you just don’t feel like working out. If this occurs frequently, especially when you feel like you had a great start and were diligent in your workouts, then it is time to take it slow and easy.

Instead Of Fat, You Are Losing Muscles

When you overdo a cardio workout and not taking the required rest, your body turns to muscle tissue for aid. Your metabolism slows down as a result of muscle mass loss brought on by excessive cardio. When that happens, your body’s system for burning fat slows down too. That is one of the reasons why you do not lose more weight than you are supposed to.

Avoid performing too much cardio to slow down the loss of muscle. Make sure to include weight training in your routine in addition to cardio instead of completely removing it. Cardio and weightlifting each have advantages of their own, so combining the two will give you the highest performance.

The Heart Rate Refuses To Slow Down

How Much Cardio Is Too Much
Christine Müller EyeEm

When you check your heart rate as soon as you wake up and instead of a normal rate, if you notice an elevated rate for a continuous number of days, then you should consider dialing down your cardio workout. This occurs when your heart’s muscle memory fails to remember what it feels like to be at rest.

The Chances Of Getting Injured Increase

When you overdo any cardio, you put your body under a lot more stress and pressure than it can take. When an individual performs a normal workout, they are not safe from the risks of injuries. However, the person’s concentration, focus, and the techniques applied, all become familiar to them and their body. But when you start to overwork yourself, you increase the risk of injury and end up losing concentration. Your body seems unable to keep up.

Some Alternatives To Cardio

When it comes to cardio, quality should be given priority over quantity and that is one way you can stop overdoing it and falling sick. There are also a few alternatives you can use to drive away from cardio for a while.


MoMo Productions

Yoga has a good reputation for being able to repair the body and help with recuperation. So, it is a wonderful way to heal your sore joints. Not only that, but yoga also helps to improve your breathing, flexibility, and movements.

Strength Training

Oscar Wong

You may strength train using a variety of techniques and equipment, including resistance bands, bodyweight workouts, and weightlifting. By increasing your resting metabolic rate, strength training can slow down muscle loss and boost calorie burning.

Why Not Just Rest For A While?

If you need a break, take it. If you find the above alternatives strenuous, then the best lane to take is that of rest. You can continue to do some stretches like lunges, gate openers, or crossovers to help relieve stress and pain from too much cardio workout.

How Much Is Not Too Much?

The CDC advises at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensive cardio every week. The heart rate should fall between 55 to 80 percent to ensure the best results from the workouts.

Final Thoughts

While cardio improves your overall health by increasing lung capacity, physical strength, mental health, and many more, overdoing can equally hamper your body. Pain is how your body communicates with you, so listen to it and slow down any excess stress you apply to your body.

You can also read:  How To Build Stamina For Boxing? – 6 Practical Tips

share this post
Related Articles
my personal favourite

full time health blogger

Hello, I am the founder of Health and Stamina and a full-time health and fitness blogger. Bringing you the most talked-about health and fitness issues from reliable sources. 

health & stamina

Subscribe to our newsletters

To receive free weekly health and fitness tips !