Active Rest?

Active Rest?

Active Rest – A Brief Explanation

active rest woman on yoga mat drinking

If you exercise regularly, you're probably well aware of the importance of rest and recovery. While those are often thought to go hand and hand, there are some crucial differences between rest and recovery. In short, it boils down to your activity level. Rest days are self-explanatory, in that you stay away from activity as much as possible and avoid putting strain on your body. With recovery, in active rest, you can actually exercise at a less intense level than you are used to. Both options are necessary for a healthy lifestyle. Let’s look at how rest and recovery between workouts can help you achieve all of your fitness goals.

Benefits of Rest and Recovery

  1. Reduce the risk of injury. There is a lot of staring put on your body during exercise, which can lead to injuries if you don’t allow it to heal. Mental fatigue can also become an issue if you refuse to take rest days.
  2. Reduce muscle pain. We have all had those days where our muscles hurt the day after exercising. Active rest has proven to be effective in helping build muscle with less pain. Moving and keeping the blood circulating is the trick here.
  3. Quicker progress. When you use active rest, you not only keep blood and nutrients circulating, you continue to burn calories, lose weight, and tone your body. Passive and active rest are both helpful in allowing your body time to repair muscle microtears that happen when you work out.

Schedule Active Rest and Recovery Days

  1. After tough workouts. You will see better results from intense workouts if you rest and recover. Failing to do so could in fact set you back a little.
  2. Create a system. Look at your overall schedule and create a plan that allows for regular rest days. Maintaining a schedule creates a habit that is easy to maintain.
  3. Recognize when you train too hard. If you are constantly picking up niggling injuries or feel tired and irritable, your body is telling you to take a break.
  4. Know your body. There is no set schedule that works for everyone, so you need to listen to your own body while you workout and in the hours after. If you stay in tune with your body, you’ll know exactly when you need to rest.

What To Do On Active Rest Days

active rest woman light dumbbells

  1. Light aerobics. Generally speaking, an active rest day should include exercises that are half your usual intensity. A walk or a run is always good, but you can also mix things up by riding your bike or going for a swim.
  2. Yoga. There are many poses in yoga that are designed to be restorative. Yin yoga in particular is good for static stretching, but you can also go online and find a video that will guide you through a yoga class.
  3. Work with light weights. This serves a dual purpose, as you can rest your muscles while also concentrating on proper form with half your regular weight.
  4. Cross training. It’s always a good idea to mix up your exercise routines and cross training is perfect for than on active rest days. Again, you should be looking to go at a moderate pace so at not to overdo it.
  5. Do something fun. Active rest can be fun, so think about taking the kids to the park to play and have some fun.

The only way to stay consistent with your exercise is to always make sure that your body is ready to go. Active rest and recovery will help make that happen, but it won't happen without your determination. It's easy to become so enthusiastic about your workout and maintaining your routine, that you can neglect your body's need for downtime. Rest and recovery is not just a "nice break" from your workout schedule. It is essential to maintaining your overall health and keeping your body fit so that you can maintain the exercise regime that you love. Take the time to rest. Then get back to it with renewed energy.

Contact Tim Adams for more great tips for recommended fitness accessories.

RX Fitness Equipment Is Here to Help

Fitness Equipment - A Shopper's Guide

If you would like to ensure that active rest and recovery is a part of your workout routine, and you'd like to discuss it with a professional, RX Fitness works with hundreds of coaches, personal trainers and nutritionists. We'd be happy to refer you to one who can help. If you're looking for a great selection of fitness equipment and accessories of all kinds, we carry the top brands to fit every goal and budget and we're here to make your fitness routine more productive. Stop by our store in Thousand Oaks or give us a call. And don't forget to check out Tim's best-selling book, Fitness Equipment – A Shopper's Guide, available at Amazon and other online book sellers as well as in our store.

Contact Tim Adams for a free consultation or stop by the store and take something for a test drive. We’re here to help.

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