We’re always told to stay active and get regular exercise. But whether you’re training for a competition or feeling extra motivated, more isn’t always better. Rest days are just as important as exercise. In fact, a successful fitness regimen isn’t complete without rest days. Taking regular breaks allows your body to recover and repair. It’s a critical part of progress, regardless of your fitness level or sport. Otherwise, skipping rest days can lead to overtraining or burnout.
Here's a look at the advantages of taking regular rest days
Exercise creates microscopic tears in your muscle tissue. But during rest, cells called fibroblasts repair it. This helps the tissue heal and grow, resulting in stronger muscles. Also, your muscles store carbohydrates in the form of glycogen. During exercise, your body breaks down glycogen to fuel your workout. Rest gives your body time to replenish these energy stores before your next workout.
2. Prevents muscle fatigue
Rest is necessary for avoiding exercise-induced fatigue. Remember, exercise depletes your muscles’ glycogen levels. If these stores aren’t replaced, you’ll experience muscle fatigue and soreness. Plus, your muscles need glycogen to function, even when you’re not working out. By getting adequate rest, you’ll prevent fatigue by letting your glycogen stores refill.
3. Reduces risk of injury
Regular rest is essential for staying safe during exercise. When your body is overworked, you’ll be more likely to fall out of form, drop a weight, or take a wrong step. Overtraining also exposes your muscles to repetitive stress and strain. This increases the risk of overuse injuries, forcing you to take more rest days than planned.
4. Improves performance
When you don’t get enough rest, it can be hard to do your normal routine, let alone challenge yourself. For example, you might be less motivated to do an extra rep or run another mile. Even if you push yourself, overtraining decreases your performance. You may experience reduced endurance, slow reaction times, and poor agility. Rest has the opposite effect. It increases energy and prevents fatigue, which prepares your body for consistently successful workouts.
What to do on rest days?
Yoga is one of the best things you can do on a rest day. It’s excellent for improving body awareness, breathing, and flexibility. It also helps you build strength while loosening your muscles
Low impact workouts
Like yoga, low-impact exercise is a great rest day activity. Low-impact workouts help you stay active without overstressing your body. They also let you enjoy exercise in a more relaxing way. This includes walking, casual swimming and dancing!
Most importantly, listen to your body!!
xx the Tammy Fit team