Thursday, November 19, 2015

Reset and Recover

Working out and eating right are two very big things when it comes to changing your body. Now you need to add in the proper amount of rest and recovery for your body to fully repair and strengthen to produce results. Making time for active recovery and rest is critical for your success. Rest days are not lounging on the couch days but they are for staying active and moving. The idea is to move your body with gentle activity for 30 to 60 minutes. This kind of activity will help stretch out tight areas, get some blood flowing to ease soreness and shake out the kinks from your joints. However, it won’t burn too many calories but active rest will help flush out toxins and facilitates muscle repair. It also acts as a cross-training technique, which helps reduce the incidence of overuse injuries such as tennis elbow, tendinitis and shinsplints. It can promote the reduction of stress hormone levels in the body, which in turn boosts fat burning and bolsters immune system response.
Active rest can be any activity you can think of, so long as it’s not too strenuous. Here are some great ideas for your active rest days that you can do solo or with friends and family.
YOGA
There are many kinds of yoga to choose from, but for active rest days, try a restorative or gentle-flow class that focuses on breathing and easy postures to help relax and oxygenate your muscles and reset your mind for the week to come.
WALKING
This is a great activity for anyone of any fitness level. If you think walking is boring, find a new area to explore nearby a park, beach or neighborhood. If you are on a treadmill, set the incline higher that 7% and at a 3.5 MPH.
HIKING
Hiking is another great way to change things up and enjoy nature while still moving your bod. Unsure where to start? Check out everytrail.com to find a nearby hike, its length and difficulty rating. Then pack a healthy lunch and take the whole family with you.
WATER SPORTS
Kayaking, paddleboarding or slow swimming is a great way to get outside, in the environment and relaxing all at once. Remember, this is a recovery day and you shouldn't be out there to workout! The water is also a great place to stretch out because your limbs are more buoyant. After you’re done with your active rest activity, spend another five to 10 minutes stretching tight muscles while in the water.
BIKING
Set aside your inner Armstrong and opt for a leisurely ride around your neighborhood, local park or boardwalk. Alternately, set your stationary bike on a low resistance and pedal to some slow jams. Think sightseeing rather than Spinning.
Make your rest days more FUN days than anything and enjoy your efforts in the gym !

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