I have the “luxury” problem of loving to workout and exercise. I love going to the gym and for me it’s just part of my daily routine and nothing I have to force myself to do. I know that this is the opposite of how most people feel about working out. But this also means that resting isn’t as fun for me…. I would prefer to go to the gym everyday as that is what I love doing, many may not understand this. But Think of your favourite hobby or series, you just want to do it all the time or watch the series whenever you can, that’s how I feel about working out.
However more and more I realise the importance of rest -its so easy to forget. It’s easy to think that the only way to get results is if you workout everyday and that resting won’t help but that’s not the case. When you workout you break down your muscles and it is through rest and good nutrition that your muscles get stronger and you get better. If you just keep breaking down your muscles without giving them enough time to rest and recover you will just feel drained of energy, not make as much progress and maybe injure yourself.
I’ve realised that for me to feel optimally strong and energetic each strength session that means c.a 4 strength sessions a weeek, anymore and I don’t feel as strong or energetic. Of course the other days I can do cardio or stretching or just rest completely but I’ve realised that even if I love strength training, doing it more than 5 times a week – for me – isn’t actually helping, I don’t get the recovery time I need and don’t feel as strong.
If you are someone who loves to workout and maybe doesn’t rest as much as you should, then my recommendation is to try to add one more rest day a week. Try taking minimum 2 rest days a week, do something else those days or another form of *light* exercise. This may be beneficial for both your mental and physical health.
Think…. will you be able to keep up the balance and exercise amount you do now for the rest of your life? I know when I was doing both powerwalks/run & the gym 5-6 times a week it worked at that period of time but wasn’t something I could keep doing for the rest of my life. Instead the balance of c.a 4 gym sessions a week and the other days walking/running/normal daily activity. This means that each time I go to the gym/strength train I feel strong, energetic and motivated.
Of course I know there are many people who don’t actually exercise enough and so they should add workout days but this post is specifically to those who are like me and like to workout a little too much.
Of course everyone is different and some periods in your life you have more energy, time and motivation to workout so then you can do it more often. But also I think, eat to match your workout intensity. If you do want to workout 2 times a day and find that is ok, just make sure to eat enough to match that exercise amount. The tiredness, lack of recovery and injury can show when you don’t eat enough when working out too much!
How is your relationship with exercise? How many days do you workout and how do you spend your “rest days”? Active rest day or complete rest? 🙂