Advertisements

Rest Days

19 Apr

I’m not sure how I feel about rest days. I know for muscle growth you need them, but generally you can have a rest day that isn’t really a rest day. That makes no sense to you I’m betting, what with you not being in my head an all lol

If you are working on building muscle it is easy to have a rest day because you just divvy up what days you work various muscle groups. So, Monday might be arms and shoulders, Tuesday  legs, Wednesday back etc. You are still going daily but you are also giving certain muscle groups a rest.

A year or so ago when I was following an extreme workout regime given to me by a super fit friend I got one rest day a week, my week looked like this:

Day 1 – short cardio, arms and shoulders

Day 2 – cardio, core

Day 3 – short cardio, legs

Day 4 – cardio, core

Day 5 – short cardio, back

Day 6 – cardio, core

Day 7 – rest

I personally feel a rest day needs to be earned, and because I am super hard on myself I feel that until I am at the fitness level I want to be at, and am maintaining, I have not earned a rest day. Doesn’t mean I don’t have days I don’t exercise, but that is due to scheduling or sheer laziness, not because I have it marked down as a rest day lol.

rest day 3

This past Wednesday though I consciously took a rest day. The previous Sunday I went running, did a bunch of squats and some upper body weight work, Monday I went for a hike, Tuesday I had dragon boat practice. The run alone caused me some muscle pain, mostly in my legs, well, most likely the run combined with the squats lol, but whatever the cause, there was muscle pain. The hike on the Monday was not planned, I was supposed to be doing something else but it ended up as a hike (on a new trail, yay!) but that did nothing for my muscle pain, especially when I wasn’t content to just hike so I did interval work while hiking. By that I mean whenever there was a flat section I would either stop and do squats, change from walking to doing walking lunges, plank, do some push-ups or do calf presses (standing ones, I would find a curb or log to balance on). During the course of the hike I did each of those exercises three times, each time a set of 12, it made me feel the hike was a better workout for the inclusion of the extra work.

But yeah, so by Tuesday my legs were kinda pissed at me lol and the run I was going to take before practice did not happen. By the time Wednesday came around all I could think was my legs would never forgive me if I went running or hiking that day so I did nothing exercise-y. I did some house work but not enough I feel it can be counted as exercise lol

Thing is, while I am not adverse to building muscle, when I think about building muscle I think of my back, shoulders and arms, mostly because that is where I need it for dragon boating. I don’t really think of my legs, which means I don’t generally give them a day off. The days I decide to not go running or hiking are usually days my knee is acting up, so I give the knee a break but that break is in no way meant as a rest day for my leg muscles, shrug.

I count my runs and my hikes as cardio, and I’m sorry but who gets a rest day from cardio? Nobody!…Least, I don’t think we are supposed to, are we?  But this past week made me realize that I am dummy and sure I am getting cardio when I go hiking or running but I am also building strength in my legs which means I am working the muscles, doh! Sooooo now I am wondering if I should be spacing my runs and hikes so I don’t do them every day, or at least consecutive days because I need to give the leg muscles a rest between workouts…

Why oh why do there have to be so many questions when it comes to working out?? sigh.

I think for now I’ll just follow what my body says, if the legs are hurting to the point the hike won’t feel good but will just be painful I won’t hike, but if I think the hike will stretch the muscles out and make them feel good well, bring it on! lol 😉

Advertisements

4 Responses to “Rest Days”

  1. Aaron April 19, 2014 at 12:58 am #

    You could try varying your runs’ intensities to work your legs on hard days and let them recover on easy days.

    • shrinkingwmn April 20, 2014 at 8:46 pm #

      I could, and thank you for the suggestion!, however, my body doesn’t like running so all runs feel like hard day runs lol

  2. gillk4 April 21, 2014 at 12:30 pm #

    I’m so terrible at taking rest days I’m like you I never feel that I earn them !

    • shrinkingwmn April 21, 2014 at 9:01 pm #

      I know, right? How do people take them and not feel guilty?? lol

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: