When high-achievers become fitness enthusiasts, they often go at it with the same competitive spirit they employ in their professional lives. They push themselves hard at work, then train hard off the job, hoping to get a little stronger and a little faster. While it is good to challenge yourself, pushing too hard can lead to burnout, injury and increased stress. Exercise can challenge you, but it should also be enjoyable and make you feel good.
Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Get frequent medical checkups. You should go to the doctor at least once a year and any time you experience worrisome symptoms. Undiagnosed health problems such as heart disease can be very dangerous combined with high-intensity exercise.
Make sure you get enough down time. If you are doing a strength-training program, do not work the same muscle groups two days in a row. Take at least a day off every week from both cardiovascular and strength training.
Replace some of your high-intensity training with fun, low- to mid-intensity exercises. You can go play a game of basketball with your kids, toss a frisbee around or take an easy neighborhood bike ride.
Listen to your body. Every once in a while, it is normal to take a few days, or even a week off of training. Your body will be able to recuperate during this time, and you will come out feeling stronger and well-rested.
Do not exercise when you are injured or sick. Even exercising during a mild cold is a mistake, since it can cause it to last longer or to migrate down into your chest and become a serious cough. Take a week off to get better, then come back to it strong and healthy.
Consider adding some low-intensity exercises which build flexibility and coordination. Activities like yoga and tai chi will help you stay strong while not tiring your body out. Because they improve flexibility, they will also help prevent injury.