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Why resting is just as important as working out?

Why resting is just as important as working out?

There are days when mustering up motivation to work out is a big challenge. But then there are other days when it’s the complete opposite. You are so fired up to work out everyday that you forget how important it is to recover from those workouts. When we follow this “all or nothing” approach, it causes more harm to us than good.

So often we hear about the important health benefits of exercise and the negative side effects of inactivity, but it’s not as common to hear about why we also need to allow our bodies some time to rest.

Yes, it’s important to incorporate small bouts of movement throughout the day, but intense workouts definitely shouldn’t be a daily occurrence.


Whether you prefer running, walking, lifting or any form of exercise, rest always plays a very crucial part in preventing injury. If you don’t get enough rest, you become more susceptible to over using your muscles. Over using any group of muscles can lead to serious injuries.


A common sign of over training due to lack of enough recovery periods is a dip in ones performance. If you don’t incorporate enough rest days in your workout schedule your progress will start going downhill. Decrease in strength and performance are two common and obvious indicators that you a training a bit too much without giving your body enough time to recover.


Have you ever been so tired that you can’t sleep at night. If you feel like this every time you workout, it’s obvious that your workouts are too intense for your body to handle and you need to slow down a little by incorporating more rest periods between your workouts.

Other common signs of over-training due to lack of rest are:

1. Constant muscle soreness

2. Elevated heart rate

3. Irritability

4. Depression

5. Lack of motivation

6. Drastic weight loss

7. Loss of appetite

8. Loss of interest in what you once felt passion for

The more often you workout the lesser the volume should be. It all also comes down to which muscle group you’re training. If you’re training different muscle groups at different days of the week then you’re on a safe side. But if you’re training the same muscle groups again and again throughout your week then you’re just calling for injuries and will end up with no gains. Muscles don’t grow when you’re working out in the gym, they grow when you rest. You create miniature tears in your muscles when you work out. When you rest, these tears get repaired and that’s how your muscles get bigger and stronger. It’s ideal to keep 3–4 days of high volume training and light volume training that does not increase your heart rate too much or some light calisthenics or stretching movements.

But then it comes down to what suits your body. We all have different genetics and we grow up in a different environment. Apart from working out, your lifestyle also affects the stress on your nervous system. This stress also builds up on you and may affect your ability to workout.

Remember, resting is just as important as working out because it’s an equal part of the total process required to build strength, endurance, and muscle.

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