Sunday, September 14, 2008
I'm not an exercise fanatic by any means, but I find it difficult to take a break from it. It's not that I love to exercise, it's just that I feel so darn good about myself afterwards, that I've done something really good for "me" similar to eating a very nutritious meal. So for me today is a hard day to take - a "rest" day from exercise - no cardio, no strengthening exercises, nada, I didn't even do any "light" activities.
My body feels fine - yes, I have arthritic aches and pains, but nothing from doing too much or overtraining. Nevertheless, most exercise experts recommend taking an occasional day off from all activity - some suggest 1 - 2 days per week. They advise that exercise causes microtrauma to muscles and that it's during rest that they not only repair themselves, but they become stronger as well. Apparently, if proper rest & recovery time is not taken that they become weaker, more prone to injury and over time become less efficient in doing the work we want and need them to do.
Experts advise that we shouldn't wait until we feel sore from exercising and that skipping rest days is the most common cause of overtraining injuries. It is true that after I've taken a day or two off that I do feel refreshed and re-energized and my workouts do seem more effective. So I guess I just have to remember that "more isn't necessarily best" and that I'm being kind to myself by taking my "rest" day. Now I just wish SparkPeople would award SparkPoints for taking a day off LOL!!!