Rest Days; Take Them

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Image courtesy of Jessica Sepel

Wednesday is one of my favorite days of the week. It is a rest day. I am still up early however I am not heading to CrossFit BWI for a WOD. Time to repair the damage I did on Monday and Tuesday, which was pretty serious. Those WOD’s were no joke.

I used to not take rest days and then wondered why I was tired and was always sore. It shouldn’t have taken me that long to figure it out. I am stubborn. So be it. “I paid the dues so I am going” six or seven days a week. Not very conducive to healing. We spend a lot of time tearing down our muscles so we have to give them time to heal.

The only time we grow is when we sleep. That explains why I am 5’8″ and my brother is 6’4″. When we were growing up he would sleep to noon, and I would be up early. He slept more so he grew more. That makes scientific sense, right? The same is true for muscles repairing themselves. All of those dead lifts from yesterday tore the muscle fibers in your legs, back, arms, and shoulders. That is why your muscles are sore. Now they need time to put themselves back together, and get bigger so they are harder to tear. They can’t heal if you are tearing them apart four days in a row.

So, what is active rest? Stretching, Yoga, light exercise like walking the dog, slow swim, etc. Fran doesn’t qualify as active rest, and neither do Turkish Get Ups. I hate those things. I take two rest days a week. Sunday is the active rest day with Yoga. Wednesday is an off day, with the exception of the next few weeks because of Whole Life Challenge. I’ll probably get in the pool for a while this afternoon and do so mobility work tonight.

Mobility. Very much needed and probably overlooked by those who need it the most, including myself. Click here. Kelly Starrett has been kind enough to post videos for just about every type of issue with a solution. Need to work on squat depth, should not working, ankles not loose enough, etc. Do a quick search on his site and you’ll find a half a dozen different suggestions to get rid of the sticky junk and become a supple leopard.

Today I’ll eat a little more, all Paleo of course. Need to load up the fuel tank for tomorrow morning’s fun and provide enough nutrients for the necessary repairs. I’ll spend some quality time with the grid roller and a lacrosse ball. Getting old sucks, however it does beat the alternative.

Take your rest days. Eat well. Kick ass tomorrow morning.

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