According to a study by the Department of Kinesiology, Texas A&M University, “the physical stress of overtraining may cause the hormones produced in the adrenal glands to become depleted.”
“This adrenal insufficiency refers to the inability of the adrenal glands to produce a normal quantity of hormones, which leads to a reduced ability in the individual to cope with stress.”
As a former over-trainer myself, I suffer from adrenal insufficiency. The last straw on the “camel’s back” was when I entered into perimenopause. My body said enough, and I had to completely stop exercising so I wouldn’t go into full adrenal burnout. Tough thing to wrap my head around since I was an athlete my whole life and loved to push my body to its limits!
After 20 plus years of being a fitness professional, my new mission is to help all my clients learn about protecting their adrenal glands—especially my female clients! Our adrenals are the backup for when we do go through the change of life, and if they are fatigued, then believe me when I say this: menopause is not going to be a walk in the park.
When you exercise, you need to be aware of whether your body is adapting to the stress of exercise. If you are overreaching and not adapting to your exercise session, then you will overload your adrenals.
Proper nutrition, balanced training, adequate recovery, and daily stress-management are all the components you need to consider whether you are a competitive athlete or a recreational athlete.