It’s Time To Rest!

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It’s time to rest. You may find it surprising that I’m going to tell you not to exercise, but that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Let me explain.

Exercise is a stimulus to your body; it’s like water to a plant. You water a plant, and between watering it absorbs nutrients from the soil and grows. But if you water it too much, you eventually wash away everything the plant needs to thrive.

Your body responds to exercise — by getting stronger and more efficient in its use of oxygen, for example — in between workouts. Just as with watering a plant, if you exercise hard every single day, you’re not giving your body a chance to naturally thrive. After a while, you can actually do harm. It’s called overtraining.

When you take a moment to “listen” to your body you’ll know when it’s time to take a rest. Exercise should boost your energy level, not leave you feeling excessively exhausted. Persistent fatigue, heaviness in your legs, irritability, sleeplessness, and minor injuries that don’t heal are all ways that your body tells you that it needs a break from exercise.
Another way to tell if you’ve overdone it is to take your heart rate first thing in the morning. Usually it stays about the same day-in and day-out. A sudden rise in your resting heart rate may mean you’re pushing too hard.

What’s your body telling you? If you’ve been pushing yourself this week, reward yourself with a rest, or the 3-minute stretch below. Take a relaxed stroll around the neighborhood or connect with nature by hiking at a local park. 

Here’s to your health!