The term “no rest days” is widely thrown around amongst fitness enthusiasts worldwide. But post-workout recovery is as important as eating right and following a structured workout routine.
It may provide a sense of motivation, but in reality, taking no rest days and neglecting post-workout recovery can prove quite detrimental to one’s health. In addition to experiencing an exercise burnout, you may face several other inconveniences, such as:
• Mild fever
• Nausea during a workout
• Extreme fatigue
• Prolonged muscle soreness
• Unusual hunger cravings
• Hitting a plateau
Of course, regular exercise is great, but if you aren’t giving your body the time off it needs, it will start to react poorly to your workouts.
Here's why post-workout recovery is important:
When we say rest, we don’t mean taking a week off after three weeks of working out every day. To avoid doing just that, give importance to rest and recovery as it's advisable to take a day or two off every week.
On that note, let's have a look at seven benefits of having adequate post-workout recovery:
#1 Allows muscle recovery after workout
If you care about your muscles, you’ll give them their much needed time for recovery after workout. Constant training hinders their growth and your performance by taking away recovery after workout.
#2 Replenishes glycogen
Your muscles store energy in the form of glycogen. Glycogen plays a huge role in diet and exercise. Giving your body rest will allow these reserves to replenish themselves. Thus, you’ll have more energy for the next week.
#3 Reduces muscle fatigue and soreness
Providing your body with adequate rest after a few days of working out will give it time to recover from the soreness induced by workouts. Moreover, excess lactate build-up in the muscles gets drained, so you won’t have to deal with beating muscle cramps.
#4 Improves performance
Contrary to popular belief, taking a day off will not slow you down. In fact, it’ll help you perform better. Your body and mind will be rejuvenated for more invigorating workout sessions. If you don’t rest, you may find yourself lacking motivation and/or energy. Ensure proper post-workout recovery to stay motivated in your fitness journey.
#5 Reduces risk of injury
Muscles and joints are most prone to injury when they have been constantly exercised without being given enough time to recover from the damage they sustain during exercises. Taking a day's rest ensures muscle recovery after workout and that there is less stress placed on the muscles.
#6 Aids with sleep
Insomnia is a big fallout of not taking post-workout recovery seriously. Taking even one day off can improve your sleep quality and help reduce the possibility of sleepless nights.
#7 Rejuvenates mind
If you find yourself feeling moody or irritable when you haven’t had a rest day, you’re bound to see a shift in your mental state once you’ve taken a much needed break and time to recover. You'll enter the next week feeling refreshed and with a renewed sense of motivation to push yourself at the gym.
So turn a blind eye to people who tell you post-workout recovery is not so important. It doesn’t always have to be a day of lazing around doing nothing (but if that’s what you need, feel free to do it!). Rest days and post-workout recovery can also mean a day of cardio, light rest day workout, yoga, spa, or enjoying a meal at your favourite restaurant. Remember to aid your body with a balanced diet to support full recovery.
Poll : Do you take rest days often?
Nope, but I need to.