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Monday, October 11, 2021

Rest day 101: Why is important to have Recovery Days

The benefits of having Recovery Days

We always talk about working out, how it is necessary to exercise, how exercising will improve your life, etc. 

But exercising it's not all, it is not about working out every day of the week! 

In the same way, we need a break from social media, from working, and many other things to improve our mental health; our body and muscles also need a break. 

It is not only good for your body to take breaks in between the exercises to help you recover, but also you need a full day to rest.

When creating a workout plan, it is vital to include rest days!

Why are rest days necessary?

When we work out the muscles, the entire body gets fatigued by the effort of the exercise. 

When you exercise, especially when you are just starting, It's common to have sore muscles. 

Sore muscles mean your muscles are tired from the effort of the exercise.

That is why we have rest days! to help the muscles rest and recover, avoiding unnecessary injuries.

How do rest days work?

There are two types of recovery methods: active recovery and passive recovery.

Active recovery: 
It means you still do some workouts, but it's a different type of exercise and is not as intense as you usually do.

Some examples of exercises you can do for an active recovery day are:

  • Yoga
  • Mobility exercises
  • Walking
  • Dynamic stretches 
  • Swimming 
  • Jogging

Passive recovery: 

It means you don´t do any exercise at all. You just let your body rest from exercising. 
 Some examples of what can you focus on passive recovery days are:
  • Sleep more
  • Focus on your nutrition
  • Get a massage
  • Go to a spa or sauna
  • Have cold or warm bath

Which one is better? Which one should I do?

Active recovery helps recover from a previous workout faster: 

It promotes blood flow to your muscles; contributes to getting nutrients quickly in your muscles, which will help them to repair themselves. 

But it is ok to don't do anything at all some days too.

It depends on you; while some experts may tell you active recovery is better, you need to listen to your body first.

I like doing active recovery every other day, it helps me relax my muscles.

What I like to do on my recovery days are yoga or mobility exercises; but I do take one day a week when I don´t do any exercise at all!

As beginners is important that we understand that is not necessarily to workout every day, it is best if you alternate one day of exercise and one day of recovery; as you improve in your workouts you can slowly add some active recovery days.

Which one do you do: 
active or passive recovery?

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