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Why Rest is Required for Getting Healthy and Fit

By Genevieve Cunningham

Staying motivated to get fit and healthy is tough! It’s all too easy to fall off the fitness wagon. Maybe that’s why once you get on a roll, many of us tend to go overboard. We think we have to take advantage of the boost in motivation and strike while the iron is hot. We work out every single day, pushing our bodies and minds. But even though it might feel like you’re getting a lot done, you may be causing harm to your fitness goals. Take a look at these reasons why a little rest and relaxation is crucial to your long-term wellness goals.

It Allows for Muscle Growth

If you want to build muscles, you really can’t skip rest day. When you lift weights, you’re actually creating little tears in the muscles. On rest day, these muscles have a chance to repair themselves, which creates a slightly bigger muscle each time it’s done. The change is miniscule, but over time, you’ll begin to notice that definition. Without rest, your body isn’t getting the opportunity it needs to repair and grow, so you’ll be hindering your muscle strength and growth in the long run.

It Helps Prevent Injury

When you’re working out every day, your muscles and ligaments and bones are being tested repeatedly. When you take a day to rest, you’re allowing these areas of the body some time to recuperate, which means they may not be so overworked and weary when your next workout rolls around. Imagine if you were to go to your job every day for months on end without a single day off. While it’s absolutely possible, it’s also absolutely exhausting. The same can be said for working out. Your body and your mind need that downtime to recover.

It Helps Prevent Burnout

Burnout is the worst. This is when you just can’t take it anymore. Instead of taking a day or two off, you have to take off weeks because you’re so completely burned out on the gym. Allowing regular rest days helps prevent this phenomenon, and subsequently keep you in the fitness game longer. While this happens to different people at different rates, it’s not a good idea to test the odds. Just take it slow, and your success will be much more likely long-term.

While it can be tough to force yourself to take a little time off, it’s crucial to your success. Work out hard, and enjoy the challenge, but then allow for some rest and relaxation. You’ll be so glad that you took the time to give it a rest when you’re still rocking your workout months from now.

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