Why R&R is just as important as exercise

rest

There are two reasons why you need to have R&R just as much as you need to stay active:

Having goals you’re passionate about is normal and natural. Not only that, but if you see a long road ahead of you towards achieving those goals, it’s possible to have one of a few reactions:

  1. Give up and quit
  2. Overdo it
  3. Obsess over getting it right: “If I can’t do it perfectly, I won’t do it at all.”
  4. Beat yourself up

Repeat after me: “Mental health is just as important as physical health”.

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We’re all guilty of doing any of these things regardless of what stage of fitness we’re in, whether we’re beginners just started out or seasoned pros who are VERY intent upon getting the job done and are enjoying it too much.

It could happen for many reasons. You may be aggressively training for a competition. Perhaps there’s a 10K coming up and you’re realizing that you’ve started your training a bit late in the game. Maybe you’re just trying too hard to “do it all” and have set high expectations for yourself.

There are things you need to do for yourself besides work out, and I’m going to list a few:

  • Stretch
  • Do yoga
  • Take time out for yourself to unwind, either over a good book or in front of the tv
  • Take relaxing baths
  • Get outside for a nice stroll

I KNOW a lot of people read my blog and my Facebook and think, “Woooowww, she’s really into working out! She must be working out 2-4 hours per day and not having much of a life! I could NEVER be into working out that much!” Honestly, I average 30-60 minutes per day and I have other hobbies I indulge in. I’m a very well-rounded soul, and you all should be too.

As for the rest of you who ARE that motivated…I’m here to tell you why your enthusiasm is wonderful, but you need to go eaaaaaasyyyyyy on yourself. Rest days allow your body to repair muscle and prevent injury. Sleep allows you to recharge for the day ahead. Not getting enough of either can lead to all sorts of not fun things like:

  • Injuries – these can be minor or major, and can potentially take you out of your training for days, weeks, and sometimes months
  • Illnesses – these are signs that your body has HAD it.
  • Burn out – mental and physical fatigue to the point of risking one or both of the above

And besides, those thing I listed suck and will make you not be able to work out. Everything in moderation for best results! I often see people go at it and when they don’t get the results they’re expecting over the course of 1-2 weeks, give up. Consistency is your best bet! You want habits you can have for life, not just for a short time in order to fit into your skinny jeans or get into that dress.

Treat your body right, you only get one per lifetime. 🙂

 

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