It Pays to Do Less: Why Rest is as Important As A Work Out
Some people think that in order to reach their health goals faster, they will work out for as long as they can. However, pushing yourself too much could put you in bad shape, or worse, injure you. Of course, I’m not telling you to cancel your gym membership, or totally quit working out. What’s important is that you allot days for exercising and days for rest.
Here are some reasons why rest is as important as a working out:
Rest makes you stronger
Engaging in strenuous workouts like weight lifting, cross-fit training, or long distance running can cause some small tears in the muscles. Resting is important to help give your body the time to recover and repair muscles. Doing this will help your muscles grow stronger and will even prevent you from having injuries.
Training too hard may prevent weight loss
You may seem happy during the early stages of your workout routine because you’re experiencing weight loss. That’s because your body is in the phase of adjusting to the new workout that you’re doing. However, if you push yourself too hard and keep on doing the same exercise everyday, your body will eventually adapt to the routine and result to a weight loss plateau. To avoid this, it’s important that you have rest intervals in between your training duration so that you will continue to lose weight.
Over training can drain you mentally and physically
Over training can cause the body to produce hormones (epinephrine and norepinephrine) that can suppress your appetite. These hormones will also make you feel both mentally and physically exhausted which is detrimental to your overall health. Always remember, the balance of exercise, diet, and rest is the great combination to be healthy.
Training without rest can cause restlessness
Although studies have shown that working out can give you a boost in your mood (a runner’s high), training too hard may actually have a reverse effect. When you push yourself too hard during training and you neglect to rest, your nervous system goes into an overdrive, causing you to become restless, feel anxious, and lose focus.
Rest gives you more motivation to work out
Taking time off from your exercise gives you more motivation to go back to training because you have something to look forward to. In contrary, skipping rest days and slaving yourself at the gym may make you feel exhausted and you will just end up feeling burnout from training. Again, a perfect balance of rest and workout is what you need to effectively achieve your health goals.
In order to get the most out of your physical training, here are some of the things you should do to fully rest and recover from your workout :
- Get adequate sleep—meaning, seven to ten hours. It’s best if you sleep before 12mn to have a quality sleep.
- Hydrate—drink lots of water during workout and rest days. Drinking water helps the body to maintain its energy, helps you recover faster and improves your energy.
- Eat nutritious food—your food choices are important so that your body remains in its optimal state. Eat loads of fruits and veggies, and other type of foods that compliment your workouts and would help your body recover.
- Take a day off—having one or two days off from your training will help your body recover faster and will prevent you from having injuries.
Even though you feel like you can go more further on your training, it’s best that you listen to your body when it tells you that it needs rest. Do yourself a favor and don’t push yourself too much,take rests in between to see better results in your workouts.
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#FREAKMODE volume training shocks your body into burning tons of fat and growing at the same time. Use it before a competition or add it to your training to stay ripped year-round.
by Alex Savva
Volume training is not for the weak. This program is for athletes looking to shock their muscles and shift into a “get ripped and grow” phase. My #FREAKMODE volume training protocol is based on the very popular German Volume Training (GVT) system, which is basically 10 sets of 10 reps.
I have done my share of GVT, but I have found that I get better results—and am less likely to fall victim to overtraining—with 8 sets of 8 reps. I’ve used this workout program many times over the years, and it’s helped me gain muscle and get ripped. Intensity undoubtedly plays a key role.
There are no rest periods between exercises or sets in this program, which drives the difficulty way up, cuts down on your time in the gym, and sends your metabolism into overdrive. This is a basic “pain and gain” workout protocol that will shock your system and help you break through any plateaus.
Note: Due to the intensity and muscle damage that this program elicits, you should only follow it for 4-6 weeks at a time.
GET FREAKY RIPPED
This plan calls for three weight-training workouts that you’ll crush each week to hit every major muscle group. Each session includes basic, compound movements for 8 torturous sets to stimulate maximum muscle fibers—which is why you are only hitting one exercise per body part. You’ll also perform some unique moves that might not be part of your everyday workout staple, like twisting dumbbell presses, rack rows, Zottman curls, and box squats.
Friday is leg day, followed by two days of rest, light cardio, or cross-training. Why allow more than a day of recovery? Well, because if you’re crushing these workouts and pushing yourself, you’ll have no other choice than to take a few days of rest.
If you do this program properly, your legs will be fried and light cardio is about all you’ll be able to manage. But don’t consider it backtracking by any means. In fact, the light cardio sessions will help speed recovery and reduce stiffness after your brutal leg session.
I’ve added a core exercise to each workout. Stick with one exercise only, so you don’t fatigue the core muscles to the degree that your strength and technique are compromised during compound lifts. The core exercise will also serve as some active recovery between each set.
Note: Don’t sacrifice form to hit the prescribed rep range for each exercise. If you can only do 5 quality reps on the last set, that’s better than cheating to get 8 and risking injury.
#FREAKMODE VOLUME TRAINING (FVT) SPLIT
- Monday: Chest and back
- Tuesday: Rest or HIIT
- Wednesday: Shoulders and arms
- Thursday: Rest or HIIT
- Friday: Legs
- Saturday: Rest or light cardio/cross-training
- Sunday: Rest or light cardio/cross-training
Watch the workout videos below, then print or download all the workouts so you can knock them out for the next 4-6 weeks!
Strength Gaining Mistakes
Top Workout Mistakes Made When Trying To Gain Strength
Not enough intensive weight.
If you don’t boost your limits, the results will take much longer. The secret on working with efficiency is using the right set of weight for your body, something that is not beyond your capacities but will not either be a easy game. If you work always with the same set of weight your body will stop growing muscles because it will finally reach a balance of resistance offered by the endurance of your body. When you don’t have to adapt anymore, you body won’t keep adapting of course! Gaining strength is about evolving your body and you have to challenge it. If the exercise is too easy, increase the amount of weight.
Not enough rest
When you work out, your body is actually destroying your current muscular fibers and rebuilding new ones, stronger and bigger. This whole process is like getting sick, your body suffers an aggression and need time to restore its forces. To work out you have to pay special attention to the muscles you have been working on. Your body requires good sleep, during which the new muscular fibers will be established for real or deteriorate. And is very important to sleep boosted with the right nutrients, proteins. Have a healthy, protein rich meal at least 2 hours before you go to bed otherwise you may experience muscle catabolism (breakdown).
Not enough sets
And just like the weights, the way, the amount of time and speed of exercises is very important to challenge your body. As you progress, the number of sets will either increase or get stationary with an increased number of weights, just to later also have its numbers of sets also increased. Once again, if things are too easy, you have to make it harder and increase the amount of sets.
Not enough exercises
Let’s say you are looking for gaining muscular mass on your lower muscles. Squats will work out your frontal muscles in the leg, the lower buttocks, but what about the rest of your lower muscles? You must not stick to a limited pair of exercises but find a complete combination of exercises that will take care of everything and be sure you are working everything. Sometimes you feel you are not getting that much muscles because you are simply working part of them!
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