When we set fitness goals, we often focus on ways to hit it hard every day leaving no room for rest or recovery. We may be trying to establish new fitness habits and feel that it requires daily workouts. When in actuality, we are doing our bodies harm and even slowing down our progress toward optimal health. Recovery days are just as important to schedule into your weekly routine as work-out days. Inadequate rest after intense workouts can lead to over-training syndrome which inhibits your body’s ability to recover properly and could lead to harmful side effects.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD I WORKOUT?
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends an adult getting 150 minutes of cardio in a week and 2-3 days of strength training on each muscle group. This amounts to 5 to 6 days of 30-60 minute workouts per week. The FIT36® workout was designed with the perfect amount of time and intensity per session and allows you 1-2 days of recovery to achieve best results.
HOW MUCH REST DO I REALLY NEED?
When you are first starting a new workout regime, take every third day off. For those with more experience, take at least one day off per week. Be intentional by planning rest and recovery activities into your weekly and daily healthy living schedule. Daily activities may include starting each day with 5-10 minutes of concentrated meditation and deep breathing or ending your day with a yoga practice geared toward relaxation. Or even taking time in the middle of the day to turn off your phone and spend a few minutes stretching.
WHAT ARE THE BEST ACTIVITIES FOR REST DAYS?
Weekly recovery activities may include scheduling a massage or going on a walk outside. If you have been working hard five or six days a week, focus on very low activity levels on your rest days. If you have been working out at a moderate level, then perhaps on your rest days you take a longer walk, bike ride or light hike.
Massage is a great way to not only focus on relaxation but to loosen tight muscle tissue and maintain your flexibility. The month of August we are giving you a chance to earn your AHHHs at FIT36. Come into a local studio to learn how you can be entered to win a 60-min massage gift card.
Focus on nurturing your body on rest days, not just staying away from those box-jumps.
The combination of an intense work-out with strategically placed recovery throughout your week will give you the results you are looking for. Work hard. Play hard. Rest hard. And live your best life.