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You’ve heard the expression, “no pain, no gain”. But does that mean you should suffer through miserable workouts, day after day?
Actually, no. While it is expected to feel out of breath and a little bit sore during a workout (or afterward), extreme levels of pain and discomfort are not normal. In some cases, certain symptoms could indicate a serious medical condition, so make sure to pay attention to your body! If you experience these five symptoms during a workout, dial down your intensity and seek medical attention when warranted.
You feel nauseated. Working out right after eating can cause nausea, but exercising on a completely empty stomach can trigger the same problem! Take note of the time of day that works for you, and time your workouts accordingly. But if you become nauseated during exercise no matter when you work out, it could be a sign that you’re overworking yourself.
You’re shaking. Sometimes during an intense workout, you might notice your muscles beginning to quiver. If you can power through and finish your last set of repetitions, this mild amount of shaking is just a good sign that you’re pushing yourself to make progress. But if your muscles shake so badly that you can’t maintain proper form, you will risk injury if you continue the workout. Shaking might also indicate dehydration or low blood sugar levels.
Your muscles cramp. Muscle cramps are another sign of dehydration, but can also signal heat stroke. Mild cramping can be normal, but if the pain doesn’t subside within a few minutes (especially if you take a break to rehydrate), then you should probably stop working out for the day. If the pain persists after you’ve cooled off, it might be time to visit a doctor.
You get a pain in your side. This type of muscle cramp typically appears during intense cardio exercise such as running. In most cases these cramps will subside over time, as you become more physically fit. They can also be reduced with a proper warm-up period and hydration. But if your side stitch continues up into your left shoulder, pay attention: This could signal a potential heart attack. Stop exercising immediately and seek medical attention.
You feel dizzy or light-headed. Dizziness sometimes occurs simply from changing positions (such as when you stand up too quickly), or from easily corrected conditions such as dehydration. But if you’re adequately hydrated and otherwise healthy, dizziness during exercise is a signal that you should visit your physician.
As always, call us for an appointment before starting a new exercise regimen. We can assess your health and examine you for underlying health conditions that could make certain types of exercise dangerous for you. Plus, visiting a weight loss physician is one of the best ways to select a diet and exercise program that will work for you.