Make ""Rest Day"" A Priority
By Luis Londono, Certified Trainer
In today‚Äôs society, we‚Äôve adapted the mind-set that we need to do more to feel better about ourselves. We‚Äôre constantly in ‚Äúgo‚Äù mode, running from one thing to the next, and not setting aside enough time for rest. Even when we get home after a long day to unwind, our brains are in ‚Äúgo‚Äù mode due to the extra time spent scrolling through Instagram or refreshing our email.
When we think of taking a ‚Äúrest day,‚Äù we often assume it‚Äôs just about not exercising. However, a rest day is really about recharging both the body and the mind. Sometimes, canceling a workout class isn‚Äôt enough to make us feel better; we might still wake up the next day feeling sluggish and tired, which makes it that much more important to look at the bigger picture.
What do you do to rest and recharge? Do you sleep in, meet a friend for coffee, take a bath, or turn off notifications? You might even opt to stay in your pajamas and not get off the couch! What‚Äôs restful for one person might not be for another. It‚Äôs all about listening to your body and doing what‚Äôs right for you as a bio-individual.
Even if you‚Äôre the type to say there are never enough hours in the day, you still need to find ways to prioritize rest. Here are a few reasons why rest is so important.
Your Body Burnout is a real thing that doesn‚Äôt only apply to people who exercise regularly. It can also affect those who are constantly moving, stressed out, sleep deprived, or refueling with caffeine. At some point, your body may suffer or experience an injury due to lack of rest. However, your body will likely signal when it‚Äôs hit a wall, with clues like increased heart rate, dehydration, weakened immune system, and feelings of depression. It‚Äôs so important to take care of your body so it has time to recover and repair. If you have a hard time sitting still, taking a walk in nature might enhance your mood while making you feel calmer.
Your Mind You might feel like your body needs more rest because you can feel when your muscles are sore or stiff, but it‚Äôs just as important for your mind to rest from active brain time! After all, your mind is working all day ‚Äì while you‚Äôre exercising, problem solving, and remembering things. Plus, your brain controls your body, so prioritizing rest for both is essential to feeling your best. When your brain is in overdrive, you might experience forgetfulness, confusion, and irrational or even aggressive emotions. Remember, it‚Äôs hard to think straight when your brain is exhausted! Activities that help you relax, like deep breathing, meditation, and yoga, are great, but don‚Äôt forget to power down your devices, too!
Need help making it a routine? Here are some tips.
Choose a Day For most, Saturdays and Sundays are the easiest days to schedule as rest days. However, just because you‚Äôre not at work for eight hours doesn‚Äôt necessarily mean you‚Äôre getting the rest your body and mind need. While it‚Äôs great to schedule an activity with friends or loved ones, constantly making plans or running errands might be adding more stress and fatigue to your life. Tell yourself ahead of time that either Saturday or Sunday (or both!) is for you and you only.
Set Boundaries Simply marking a day on the calendar or scheduling a rest day doesn‚Äôt mean you‚Äôre good to go. How many times have you taken a PTO day and still been go-go-go? To ensure rest really happens, write down a few things you will and won‚Äôt do. Maybe you know you‚Äôll go for a walk in the morning and won‚Äôt check or answer work emails. The list of things you ‚Äúwon‚Äôt do‚Äù might come a little easier to you at first, but once you figure out what helps you feel the most relaxed, you‚Äôll be less stressed and more at ease as you head into a new week!
What does rest mean to you? How many rest days do you currently take each week? Share in the comments below!
Luis is passionate about helping people change their lives for the better. He believes one person at a time can make a change and make a difference in our nation. He received his training from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where he studied a variety of dietary theories and practical lifestyle coaching methods. ""I learned innovative coaching methods, practical lifestyle management techniques, and over 100 dietary theories; everything from Ayurveda, gluten-free, and Paleo, to raw, vegan, and macrobiotics, and everything in between. My education has equipped me with extensive, cutting-edge knowledge in holistic nutrition, health coaching, fitness coaching, and prevention. Learn more about Luis at https://luislondonowellness.com/.
Experience: NASM CPT, Hollistic Health Coach
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