Mar 5, 2020

Why Taking Rest Periods Is Just As Important as the Workout Itself

You need to push yourself if you want to improve your fitness. Although it’s important to understand your limits, you do need to exert a certain degree of effort to build muscle, lose weight, or achieve any other major fitness goals.

That doesn’t mean you should be pushing yourself all the time. As essential as the right equipment – like comfortable sneakers – and consistent exercise is, making sure your body gets enough rest is also crucial. You simply can’t make improvements if your body doesn’t have time to recover.

Why Rest After Exercise is Essential

Again, boosting your fitness requires stressing your body. Perhaps you’re trying to improve your strength. You need to stress your muscles to do so. This technically involves mildly damaging the tissues.

However, after you stress them, they need to adapt. You can in fact stress them too significantly if you don’t give your muscles time to rest and recover. For muscles to grow, those minorly damaged tissues must heal. True muscle growth occurs when tissues heal and essentially add new layers. If you don’t give them time to recover, they’ll in fact sustain more damage.

This doesn’t merely prevent you from achieving your fitness goals. It can also put you at risk of injury. Guard against these consequences by keeping the following tips in mind:

How to Properly Rest After Exercise

The amount of rest your body needs after exercise will depend on a number of factors, including the degree to which you stressed your body, and the type of exercise you are performing. You may want to research the topic more deeply or coordinate with a physical trainer to better understand your specific needs.

That said, there are certain general points you can remember to ensure your body gets proper rest.

One is to make sure you’re getting enough sleep. Effective rest doesn’t merely involve giving your body a break for a day after working out vigorously. Even if you’re not exercising, if you’re not sleeping enough, you’re not truly recovering.

You also need to provide your body with essential nutrients and hydration. For example, if you’re trying to build muscle, you should focus on consuming adequate amounts of protein after a workout session.

You might also take additional steps to optimize your recovery, such as getting a massage. This helps the blood provide more oxygen and nutrients to damaged tissues.

Some people are tempted to work out hard every single day after making a commitment to fitness. They feel they’ll make improvements more quickly if they constantly push their bodies. However, for the best results, it’s in fact smarter to get sufficient rest. Your body simply can’t thrive without it.


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