Whenever anyone starts a new exercise program or even a new gym, they are often motivated to come every day without taking a day off. However, those days off are just as important to making progress as the days in the gym!
We get it though. You look at the workout and think “That looks fun!” Or your new gym friend texts you that they are going to class and “Hope to see you there!”
But, without taking a rest day, you will not continue to make progress. During exercise, physical stress is placed on the body. In order to see the benefits from that stress, you need to give your muscles time to recover. True improvement comes after the workout when your body is working to repair muscles, rebuild, and be stronger. If you never allow your body that time, it will continue to break down without being built back up again. We recommend taking 1 rest day at least every 4 days so that you can see the results you are looking for!
Another benefit to a rest day is allowing your body to fight the inflammatory response that occurs after high-intensity exercise. During flu season, this can make you even more susceptible to germs, which might translate to even less gym-time if you end up sick. So don’t be afraid to take time off to help stay healthy also!
Remember, high-intensity exercise is just that…intense. So the next time you feel guilty for taking that day off from the gym, remember it is making you stronger in the long run and helping you reach your goals even faster.