(CNN) – Too much exercise could keep you from making good choices.
A new study claims overworking your body might interfere with your ability to delay self-gratification.
The brain’s capacity for exertion is limited. Simply put, over-exercising the body could lead to brain burnout, according to a study in the journal Current Biology.
A group of elite endurance athletes were asked to overtrain for three out of nine weeks.
Researchers then compared them to a group who had been training normally.
The overworked athletes didn’t do as well as their counterparts in a cycling test.
And MRI scans showed more fatigue in the cognitive control part of their brains.
The findings show a link between overexertion and the inability to resist the temptation of immediate gratification.
Athletes were asked if they’d prefer $10 now, or $50 in six months.
Those who overtrained were more likely to take the $10.
But experts point out the study only looks at endurance athletes, not regular people.
Prior research shows about four to five hours of exercise each week can have positive affects on cognitive function, meaning the average Joe shouldn’t worry about brain burnout.
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