How many times have you wanted to take a break in your workout or your fitness program, but you push yourself just because you think you need to keep working. You work and work and work and work, but eventually you just burn out because you’re working too hard.
This may sound like odd advice coming from a post all about getting in shape and losing weight, but the truth is that even the fittest athletes and superstars need to take a break from their workout routines. Sometimes, it’s just best to relax and kick back.
What Happens If You Don’t Take a Break
If you push yourself too hard, your body will not be able to repair itself. Every day when you exercise, you are tearing the fibers of your muscles, wearing down the cartilage in your joints, and using up a lot of the energy in your body. A good night’s sleep and proper nutrition ensures that your body will be able to repair itself, but sometimes you push so hard that your body just can’t keep up. You work out for too long, you overuse certain muscles, or you don’t get a good night’s sleep. When this happens, your body isn’t able to make those repairs.
When you push yourself too hard for too long, you end up straining your body. You may notice this strain in the form of an injury to your muscles, joints, ligaments, tendons, or even bones. You may notice that you’re much more tired when you wake up in the morning, and you just can’t make it through your daily workout properly. You may have less motivation to work out, and the very idea of lifting weights, running, or cycling just turns your stomach.
this happens, you’ve reached the verge of exercise burnout. This is when it’s time to take a break!
How and When to Take a Break
If you need to take a break from your fitness routine, you can’t see it like you’re failing yourself or slacking off. Your body does need a break, which is why holidays are mandatory around the country. Just like you need to have a few days off from work, you need a few days off from your workout as well.
When you’re going to take a break, make it a break where you rest up as much as you can. This is not a time to hit the clubs or spend all night playing video games. It’s time for you to get as much rest as possible, as well as following a diet that can help to repair your muscles and restore all of the nutrients that you’ve been missing out on. It’s not the worst idea to eat a bit more than normal, focusing on protein, complex carbs, vitamins, and minerals. Make sure that the food you eat goes straight to work repairing your body, getting it back in shape for when you start working out again.
When should you take this break? Basically, you should do it after pushing your body very hard for a long time. If you’ve been hitting a new workout program hard for a couple of months, give yourself one day to rest. If your program has lasted six months, celebrate your accomplishments with a few days of rest. It will go a long way towards helping you to feel motivated when you get back into the program a few days later, and you’ll find that you feel much better physically thanks to the days of rest that you got during your break.