If you have been in the fitness world at all then I am sure that you have heard of the coveted “Rest Days” Some people take advantage of them a little too much and others don’t take advantage of them at all. Let’s talk about why they are important and how to find the perfect balance between a lazy day off and giving your body the rest it needs.
High Intensity Trainers, Crossfitters, Runners and Weight Lifters …t his one if for you. I am a H.I.I.T chick at heart so I naturally love anything high intensity. However, that can really take a toll on your body. Especially if you are in the gym 4 or more days a week. Working out breaks down your muscles, so it is crucial to allow them to rebuild and repair. Lack of rest and recovery can result in injuries, joint pain, decreased performance, fatigue, and a compromised immune system. I don’t know about you but I workout to feel better, not worse!! Make sure you are taking 1-2 rest days a week.
Now, just because you know that rest and recovery is important, doesn’t mean it’s always easy to do. If you are like me sometimes you get frustrated on your day off because you feel like you are being lazy and just want to get moving! If you start to feel that way just think about all the wear and tear you put on your body each day at the gym. Your poor bod needs a break and a little TLC. In order for me to combat the feelings of laziness, I like to use my rest days for active recovery. Active Recovery is when you are doing an activity that still allows your body to be moving but recovering at the same time. Think low impact, low intensity, you may break a slight sweat but you should be able to hold a conversation while doing it. It should also only be done for a short period of time.
Some of my favorite active recovery activities are yoga, casual bike rides, easy to moderate intensity hikes, stretching & foam rolling. Drop a comment below and let me know your favorite type of active recovery!
Madison Murray is a certified personal trainer, group fitness instructor and a certified sports and exercise nutrition coach. For more information, visit www.madfitaz.com