Paleo / Primal / Bacon / CleanEats Lifestyle
As I approach my 1 year anniversary of my gym routine I am currently coming off a rest week. I still can’t believe I have been going steady to the gym for one year without missing too many days other than rest days throughout the week. I have been doing a lot of research on lifting weights and exercise programs and with all of my research decided it was time to take a week off from lifting.
The reason for the rest week was to let my body fully heal, recover, catch up on sleep and get over a cold. It was all happening at once, I was starting to hate working out, I was tired, and I had a cold that I could not shake. I am no Doctor…(You’re not?!?) but I believe a rest week would be the perfect thing to recover from the cold and catch up on my lack of sleep due to my crazy work schedule. With my schedule on the tugboat I work from 12pm-6pm and 12am-6am. I generally work out at 6pm. Now I don’t know about you but after a workout I have all sorts of energy and find it hard to sleep. Sometimes I can sneak in a nap before my midnight shift begins but most of the time I am too amped up from exercise.
I normally have 1-2 days of rest per week with my training regimen. I find that to be enough rest for myself. I have been reading on blogs and forums that with steady exercise a week off every 8-10 weeks will not hurt your gains in the gym but actually help you push past plateaus.
Our bodies are able to recover and respond to training in between weight training sessions. However, intense weight-training puts a tremendous amount of stress on your body, and it is not just your muscles that are affected. The entire neuromuscular system, as well as immune function is stressed by weight-training.
The bottom line is that your body physically needs time off approximately every 8-10 weeks. Some individuals may need a recovery week more often than this and some less often, but 8-10 weeks is a good general guideline. I would rather err on the side of taking a recovery week too soon rather than waiting until I am completely overtrained. In this case, a week off may not be enough to let your body recover.
A week away from the gym also provides an important mental break from the daily rigors of an intense weight-training program. I always come back to the gym with a new vigor and desire to train. It is amazing how much a week away from the gym will do for your motivation and level of intensity. It is impossible to train with the utmost intensity week after week and month after month, and especially year after year, if you never take time off from the gym. – Bodybuilding.com
I am in day two back from the rest week and the last two gym sessions have felt great! I have been looking forward to stepping foot into the gym and continue my journey to being the fittest I can be. I will now schedule a rest week in 10 weeks from now and I have already marked it on my phone’s calendar. Also I am now not afraid to take a few days off in a row if I am sick or if I am starting to hate the gym again. For now I have rekindled my love affair with the gym!