"What are you training for now?"
"What are your goals?"
Sometimes we have clearly identified goals, like competing in an event or achieving a new PR. During these times we do anything to get to our goal, we make sacrifices and perhaps neglect other parts of our life. That's great in the short term, but what about the the long term? What do you train for between athletic endeavors? And how do you stay motivated and healthy? I like to think of it as "training for life." I call it "preservationist training," and I program workouts with the priorities below:
1. What movements give me the most bang for my buck with the least amount joint degradation?
2. High repetition exercises can be appropriate at times, but variety is key in preserving joints.
3. Form over pace. I'm sick of seeing sloppy work for the sake of the clock, slow down and work smarter, not harder.
4. Active rest days are key. Get out of the gym or your normal training environment and do something different (go for a walk, play in the park etc).
5. Don't be so hard on yourself, relax, enjoy your life, your workout, food and family. Life is short so make sure you find a healthy balance of gym and time for everything else.
To be honest in the past I have beaten my body up with ridiculous amounts of exercise and extreme eating habits. My long term goal is and always has been to be able to continue exercising with a healthy body for the rest of my life, but my actions were diametrically opposed to achieving my goal. Let's keep this from happening to you, be sure to keep a clear view of your long term goals!
Check in with your goals (both long and short term).
More is not always better and take time to explore how less can be more.