For many of us the idea of resting is something that only exists in fairytales. Some of us even refuse to give our workouts a rest. We go hard seven days a week. Or, we balance it out, cardio, strength and stretching…. seven days a week.
However, here’s why rest is important. When you workout you are creating tiny tears in your muscles. When the tiny tears repair, you become stronger. You can probably guess that the road to repair is rest.
Okay, so now some of you might be thinking “Great a cheat day!” maybe you’re already blocking off your calendar for a date with the bag of chips and your couch. On the other hand, some of you might be coming down with a severe case of FOMO, (Fear of Missing Out) at the thought of you resting and your friends lifting.
However, neither should be the case. Consider setting aside time for active rest. Active rest is where you flow through a light activity so that you are still moving, just not at the same level of intensity as the other days of the week. Active rest activities include things such as: hiking, biking, walking your dog, playing with your kids, or going for a swim.
Active rest is not a date with your coach, and it doesn’t mean everyone else is at the gym getting stronger behind your back. Active rest is important because it allows your muscles to rebuild, your mind to relax and depending on the activity you choose, can either allow you to connect with nature or allow you to spend quality time with your family or friends.