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How to take a Productive Rest Day

By June 2, 2017Motivation, Move

Here at FitU, we’ve gone over the importance of taking rest days. Oftentimes, people think working out every day is the best way to see results, whether those desired results are improving your lifts, losing weight, or just living a healthy lifestyle. While consistency is definitely important for achieving your goals, learning to listen to your body and give it the rest it needs is just as valuable.

Not only do rest days help prevent injury and encourage muscle recovery, but studies show that over-training can lead to excess levels of cortisol in your body. This can thus make you feel fatigued and depressed. In the end, taking a day or two off will help your body in the long run, and make your workouts more effective.

Just because you take a day off from your usual fitness routine does not mean you have to sit at home all day instead. Here are some ideas on how to keep moving, even on an off day. 

1. Deep clean your room or apartment.

Get moving and feel refreshed by vacuuming under your furniture and all those hard to reach spaces, deep cleaning your bathroom, cleaning out your fridge and changing your sheets. Not only will your health benefit from a cleaner space but there is a clear link between mental wellness and an organized, clean home. Blast some music and get moving like Mr. Clean.

2. Do an “active” activity.

Most cities and suburbs have tons of different events and attractions like rock climbing gyms, trampoline parks, or ice skating rinks. Be a kid again and grab some friends to tag along. Most of these options are cheap, and you’ll make memories and spend time with others in addition to keeping active. 

3. Stretch.

So many of us neglect this aspect of our fitness routine, despite the clear benefits it has to our bodies. It can be done just about anywhere at any time. Use a foam roller or do some yoga if you’re feeling fancy. 

4. Go for a walk outside.

This walk can range from a loop around your neighborhood with your family to a day-hike. Walks are free and benefit your health via a dose of Vitamin D and clean air. Being outside also improves your sleep and psychological health

A day off won’t kill your progress. As seen above, there are a variety of options in which you can make a rest day valuable and useful without traditional exercise. 

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Author Lauren Folk

Lauren is a 3rd year student at Northeastern University who loves dogs, brunch, trashy reality TV and Crossfit (not necessarily in that order). When she's not studying for her Industrial Engineering classes, she can be found wandering around Boston or cooking for her friends. Follow her on Instagram at @lfolk or @thebuffchix!

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