Can we talk rest days?

If you’re trying to achieve a fitness goal, you might be tempted to jump in and give 110%.

You know …

… all in.

… all the time.

But that’s not how muscles work.

Put simply, your muscles need a break — and so do you.

Why are rest days important?

  1. Working out can be hard on your body. If you overdo it, excess stress and strain on your muscles can increase your risk for injury.
  2. Exercise creates very small tears in your muscle tissue. This is normal, but your body needs a chance to repair and rebuild that muscle tissue.
  3. Rest days give your body has a chance to remove excess lactate from your muscles, ultimately reducing pain and soreness.

How often should you schedule rest days?

As a general rule of thumb, you should plan one rest day for every three to five days of exercise. Be sure to factor in the frequency and intensity of your workouts when deciding how often you need a break.

What are some good ways to spend a rest day? 

Forget your stringent workout schedule, just for a bit. Instead, consider some of the following activities:

  • Enjoy a relaxing after-dinner walk around the neighborhood with your spouse or a good friend
  • Splash around in a neighborhood pool with your kids or grandkids
  • Play frisbee in the backyard with your pup

You don’t need to be completely sedentary, but do remember to take it easy while giving your body a much-needed break. Your body will thank you in the long run!