Signs You Should Stop Exercising Immediately

If you're working out to the point of exhaustion, lightheadedness, or feeling faint, it's time to stop.

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Love your heart.

Everyone knows exercise is good for your heart. "Regular, moderate exercise improves the heart health by decreasing risk factors that cause heart disease," says Dr. Jeff Tyler, an interventional cardiologist at the Orange County Heart Institute.

Inflammation is reduced.

Your heart is hard at work to extract oxygen from your lungs, and then to send it to every corner of your body. The heart is a group of muscles. Regular exercise can improve your heart health and make you more capable of pumping blood when it is needed.

Exercise can sometimes be dangerous for your heart.

Do you recognize the signs that it is time to stop exercising and go straight to the hospital?

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You can exercise your heart.

One thing is certain: Exercise is extremely good for your heart. The benefits of exercise far outweigh any risks for most people.

According to the American Heart Association, physical activity is the best way to prevent stroke and heart disease, which are two of the leading causes of death in America. For adults, the AHA recommends that they exercise at least 150 minutes each week.

You can't have too many good things. Regression in your progress and results is often the first sign. This is sometimes called overtraining. If your muscles feel strained all the time, and you have trouble sleeping or keeping up with previous easy workouts, it could be a sign that something is wrong. It is best to take a break and seek medical attention.


U.S. News Health provides accurate information on health, nutrition, and fitness as well as detailed medical condition guides. Our stories are based on multiple sources and experts, including licensed nutritionists and medical doctors. Our editorial guidelines provide more information about how we ensure that our content is accurate and trustworthy.

Kisha Carr

Carr is a CrossFit Level 2 Trainer and USA Weightlifting-certified trainer with Invictus Fitness in San Diego, California.

Mark Conroy MD

Conroy is an emergency medicine, sports medicine physician at the Ohio State University Wexner Hospital in Columbus.

Jonathan A. Drezner, MD

Drezner, a Seattle-based family physician who specializes in sports medicine at University of Washington, is located in Seattle.

Martha Gulati MD, MS FACC, FAHA and FASPC

Gulati is the director of preventive cardiology and associate directors of the Preventive and Rehabilitative Cardiac Center of Cedars-Sinai Smidt Heart Institute. Gulati is president of American Society for Preventive Cardiology, and associate director of Barbra Streisand Women's Heart Center.

James Suchy MD, CAQSM

Suchy is a sport medicine physician at Hoag Orthopedic Institute, Southern California.