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Understanding The Signs: When to Take a Break From The Gym

Fit woman lifting weights with hand on hip

While working hard in the gym is important, taking time off from the gym to recover is equally important. Sometimes, you need more than just one to two days off to recover properly. Sometimes, you may actually need to take an entire week to recover properly. 

Now, I know what you're thinking. When you're working hard in the gym and seeing progress on your goal, the last thing you want to do is take a week off, right? But, believe it or not, taking a rest week a few times a year is crucial to achieving and keeping your results. If you don't take a rest week often enough, you're much more likely to injure yourself, burn out, and lose motivation. Not to mention, it can make it much harder for you to make gainz and achieve your goals.

In this blog, we're going to talk about what a rest week is, why it's essential for your well-being, and how to know when you should take a break from the gym so you don't overwork yourself. 

1. What is a rest week? 

Woman resting against wall by window looking peaceful

A rest week is a week that you take off from doing physical exercise. It's a time that can be utilized to reset your system, body, and mind and is designed to help you rejuvenate your energy, keep your motivation, and reignite your excitement to exercise.

This week can be spent however you want. On a trip, or just focusing on hobbies, daily tasks, and other areas of your life. You just want to make sure you prioritize rest more than anything here and aren't pushing your body through any big physical exertion.

2. How often do you need to take a rest week? 

Woman overwhelmed by workout

Now, the best way to tell when you need to take a rest week is to get in tune with your body and pay attention to how it's feeling.

When you're training hard in the gym, after a while, what ends up happening is your body will adapt to the workouts you're doing. Once it adapts, it will respond slower, and you'll get to a point where your workout feels stagnant and you aren't making any progress, no matter how much you try. When you get to this point, a lot of people tend to work harder to try to make gainz, but this isn't necessarily the right answer. 

A lot of people don't realize that feeling this way doesn't mean you need to work harder; it's your body's way of telling you that you need to slow down and take a break. If you don't listen to this, you will likely get to the point where your central nervous system becomes overwhelmed and you feel constantly tired. You'll also start to get tired more quickly, lose mental focus more easily, and feel beaten down.

Not to mention, you could show no physical signs of needing a break but show mental signs of exhaustion instead. This could be not getting excited to go to the gym anymore, feeling mentally drained regarding your goal, and feeling like it's becoming a chore.

If you're experiencing any of this, it's a good sign that you need to take a rest week. 

3. What if you don't notice the signs?

Woman tired from working out

If you aren't noticing any signs that you need to take a rest week, you should count on taking a rest week every three to six months. The best part is that if you plan this out properly, your rest week can match up with something fun, like a vacation, too, so it can be the perfect way to rest and unwind without feeling bad about it.

Either way, whether you're feeling burnt out or not, make sure you don't skip out on taking a week to rest your body and rejuvenate yourself so you don't get to the point of fatigue and injury. 

So, when should you take a break from the gym?

Overall, taking a rest week is crucial for your results and well-being. Many people struggle with the idea of taking a rest week because they feel like they're backtracking. However, that much-needed rest actually helps them build more muscle and recover properly so that when they return to the gym, they can train harder and make better progress.

If you push yourself too hard and don't allow adequate time for rest, it can cost you your results. So, always prioritize rest periods to reach your goals quickly and effectively.

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