There is so much pressure to be the best we can and to exercise everyday to get your ideal “body goal”. But the truth is that you need to incorporate rest days into your weekly schedule. Rest days are just as important as your training sessions. If you do not let your body recover, then you do not give time for your muscles to grow and will eventually experience burn out.
It can do more harm than good if you do not set aside at least one rest day a week. It will put a lot of strain on both your body and mind and could result in an injury where you will be forced to take many rest days... all at once.
No matter what type of training you do, whether it be running, lifting weights or swimming – you need to schedule rest days. You will be surprised by how many benefits there are and how it may help you progress faster:
- Rest days help your muscles recover and grow. When you are training, you cause microscopic tears in your muscles. As your body repairs these tears – it makes them stronger.
- Rest days help to reduce the risk of injury. If you do not give your body time to recover – your body can easily over work a muscle and cause a muscle sprain.
- Rest days help to prevent mental and physical burnout. If you overtrain – you will eventually feel constantly tired and have little to no energy. It can also have on impact on your sleeping schedule, and it will have a negative impact on all your other daily tasks.
- Rest days can help keep you motivated. A lot of us find joy in training… but if we overdo it then it can lead to it feeling like a chore. Taking a day off can make you excited and focused to train hard the next day.
- Rest days can keep your immune system healthy. Keeping fit and healthy helps keep you healthy. But overdoing it can lead your body into overdrive and your body may not be able to keep up and can lead to increased risk of getting colds and flu.
A rest day does not always have to be a full day of relaxation. If your body does not feel fatigued... it is okay to have an ‘active rest day’ which includes an easy yoga flow or a walk that does not put strain on your muscles.
Make rest days a part of your training program.