How much rest and days off?
5 things you should do and then 5 things I do... Because I'm not going to lie.
What you SHOULD do:
1. Schedule at least 1 whole day off from training and just rest your body. This allows recovery.
2. Take a week off every 3 months to give your body a break from the intense training regimen. No need to do this if you're not hitting it hard at all.
3. If you're sick do not work out. A slight nose cold = no problem but listen to your body. When you have an infection your body is interested in fighting that, not to build muscle. When you add a catabolic stress like training onto an already challenged immune system you might end up sicker and also recovery might take longer time muscle wise.
4. If you have strained your muscles, fight overuse injuries and pain, go see a specialist and try to find the root of the cause. Rehab it, train smarter. If you can't train around it you need to rest it.
5. Vary your training volume and intensity. Your body responds to change and giving it a slightly lighter protocol can allow recovery and increased strength when you DO go heavy again.
Now over to what I do... And remember I don't pretend to be a role model. Just honest here
1. I struggle taking days off. Always have always will. I can go months without a day off... But then I feel guilty. I rely on the fact if I REALLY need to rest my body will STOP me from going training. Until that day... I give myself permission to train as much as I want.
2. I schedule days off when I travel. I purposely don't pack training clothes or shoes so it's harder for me to work out. Shit happens though and I've trained unplanned.
3. Knock on wood but I'm seldom sick. When I've been sick I've trained anyway.
4. I have had many strains, pains and some injuries over the years, but since I don't want to stop training I've always taken care of it, researched it and learned what my body tells me so I can give it what it needs... So I can keep training.
5. I'm better at varying reps, sets and structure of my workouts now than years ago. I used to go heavy heavy with low reps all the time, but then realized it wasn't the most efficient approach. Now I mostly vary between total load (higher reps = greater total load) and as heavy as possible. I'm infamous for my LONG workouts with lots of volume but I also do short ones.
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