Rest & Recovery Tips from Performance Therapy Ireland
Just as it’s important to do exercise in the first place, it’s equally as vital to take adequate rest days. Everything in moderation, as they say! But what should determine my rest day?
What you do in the gym should give you energy for life, not take it away. Don’t make your workout another stressor in life, life has enough of them, for example:
Stress should be the determining factor as to when you take a rest day. Some stress is normal but when your body is over-stressed it can have a negative impact on your health (both physically and mentally) if not managed correctly. It can affect:
If you’re feeling stressed and you feel like you haven’t had the time to chill out – that means it’s time for a rest day! When we say rest day, we don’t just mean from the gym. We mean a rest day from your daily routine. Look out for our next post on what to incorporate into your rest days.
So, What should I do on my Rest Days?
Now we know that life’s stressors indicate when we have a rest day. What should we be doing when we have this much needed Rest Day?
A rest day should be a day away from work, emails and anything that’s in your usual daily routine that might cause you to be stressed.
Use your rest day as a chance to DE-stress. Not having time in the week to de-stress can affect the physical goals you want to reach in relation to body composition or performance goals.
Do something different, do something NEW, take a break from the same daily routine. Here are some ideas for your next rest day
A rest day doesn’t mean you sit around all day and do nothing. Give your life energy and do something different, do something NEW!
The proof is in the Recovery
We now know;
When to take a rest day
What to do on a rest day
But how can we avoid the ‘need’ for a rest day? Now it is and will always be good for one to take a rest day away from life’s stressors and take some time for yourself, but that isn’t always possible, with family life & work etc, So what can we do to maximise every day and not just ‘live for the weekend’ or your next ‘day off’. If recovery each day can be prioritised, it will help manage the stressors in life that might be making you feel drained!
Sleep is one of the single most important factors to ensure you recover from the day and help you function optimally the next day. But, Why is sleep so great? Because sleep is the body’s natural way to recover. If our bodies can recover naturally, shouldn’t we optimise this and use it to our advantage? This could save money & time spent on supplements and accessories that are being marketed/sold to help you ‘recover’. Try these three tips to optimise your sleep;
Centuries ago all humans slept when it was dark and woke when it was bright. Now with all of the artificial light, we tend to stay up longer and later. Try starting by turning off all artificial light (phones, TV, tablets) 90minutes before bedtime.
2.Create a routine!
We create bedtime routines for our children. So why stop when we’re adults? Creating a routine can help with your sleep pattern and gain consistency and hygiene when it comes to sleep. A routine in the summer could look like this;
10.30pm: Sleep for 8 hours
3.Sleep in a Cool, Quiet & Dark Room!
The optimal sleeping temperature is said to range from 15.5-19 degrees celsius. To maximise REM, Deep & Light sleep it’s advised to have uninterrupted sleep by sleeping in a quiet & dark room.