Have you ever felt guilty for taking a rest day? If you have, this is a reminder that 1. It is okay and 2. sometimes your body needs it, especially for those of you who do a lot of weight training.
Here are some of the reasons why you need to have a rest day:
- Muscle recovery. When we lift heavy weights, it puts stress on our muscle fibres which cause them to break down. When we then take a rest from lifting weights, these fibres recover, in turn making our muscles stronger.
- Decrease in strength and performance. When we lift heavy everyday, are we actually able to give 100% in each session? The answer here is probably no. If this is the case you are probably hindering the progress that you are making, even causing a potential loss in muscle.
- To prevent injury. You can run the risk of overtraining. Alongside this, it can increase your susceptibility to muscle soreness and also pose the risk of injuring yourself in the long run.
- To stay motivated. It’s great to have the eagerness to train on a daily basis, but if you do too much you will lose the enthusiasm for doing your workout and the quantity will outweigh the quality of the workout. It is better to train less but focus all the attention on the days that you are training.
- Because you can. You may have a lot to do on a particular day or you may simply just not feel like going to the gym or doing exercise. That is okay as well, because resting both physically and mentally are equally as important as one another.
Next time you feel guilty for taking a rest day, remember the above. Making progress means having a rest. Your body will thank you for it and you will come back stronger.