When striving to reach your fitness goals, whether it is to increase muscle mass or endurance, adding more workouts to your training schedule may not always help you reach your fitness goals faster. In fact, there is considerable evidence to suggest that not having rest days may slow down your progress. Let’s consider the benefit of rest days for workouts.
- Facilitates rebuilding and hypertrophy of muscle tissue: Exercises causes microscopic tears in the muscle tissue. Rest days allow your muscles to heal and grow larger to adapt to excess stress placed on it.
- Bolsters your immunity: Individuals that work out too often experience exerciseinduced fatigue due to depletion of glycogen in the muscle. They also experience increased susceptibility to colds and other infections.
- Reduces risk of injury: When the body and mind are well rested, you can concentrate better on maintaining proper form while performing your exercises.
- Improves sleep: Increased physical activity causes release of the feel-good, energy boosting hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol. Too much of these hormones can interfere with sleep. Rest days help balance hormone levels and normalize sleep patterns.
The amount of rest you need will vary depending on the intensity of your exercise activity. For example, walking for exercise can be done every day. Moderately intense activities such as aerobics or running require a day of rest in between workouts. High intensity workouts such as hardcore bodybuilding may require 3-4 days of rest in between workouts.
As you can see, scheduling in rest days aren’t a sign of laziness, but indicate that you are not just training hard, but also training smart. Of note, it’s a good idea to get any muscle or joint pain checked by your doctor or an orthopedic specialist before starting a new workout program.
NewportCare Medical Group is a comprehensive specialty group located in Newport Beach, California specializing in advanced non-surgical and surgical treatments for a wide range of orthopedic conditions.