Let me ask the question a different way, Brigid, “When is your recovery day?”
I squirm on the chiropractic table, embarrassed to admit the answer, “I don’t have one—BUT working out in the early mornings makes the average person 65% more productive; BUT for my clients, I need to work out with them so they don’t feel alone; BUT for my boot campers, I need to interact with them so they stay engaged and accountable….”
The doctor queries, “BUT…if you don’t rest, you don’t recover.” GULP.
Rest days. Recovery days. Intentionality towards complete health and fitness.
Working out is not when our muscles grow, quite the contrary, working out breaks them down. Workouts cause micro trauma; tiny tears in the fiber that needs time to heal and repair. It’s when we REST that our muscles grow and get stronger.
First, rest obviously takes the form of sleep. Sleep means sleep. Sleep does not mean Facebooking, watching a movie, or reading a book while in your bedroom. Can’t get to bed at a reasonable hour because you are too busy? Then, manage your time better and tuck yourself in with intentional sleep.
Second, rest takes the form of recovery time between different lifting workouts. By alternating lift and cardio days, as well as taking a rest/roll/stretch or core-focused day, you allow the joints, ligaments, and tendons healing and recovery time. Can’t seem to get the pain out of your low back? Then, implement and execute your workouts with intentional recovery.
No ifs, ands, or BUTS. Recovery is an integral part of a fit and healthy life.