Relax, Refresh, Recharge

Have you ever felt guilty for taking a rest day? If you have, this is a reminder that 1. It is okay and 2. sometimes your body needs it, especially for those of you who do a lot of weight training. 

Here are some of the reasons why you need to have a rest day:

  1. Muscle recovery. When we lift heavy weights, it puts stress on our muscle fibres which cause them to break down. When we then take a rest from lifting weights, these fibres recover, in turn making our muscles stronger. 
  2. Decrease in strength and performance. When we lift heavy everyday, are we actually able to give 100% in each session? The answer here is probably no. If this is the case you are probably hindering the progress that you are making, even causing a potential loss in muscle. 
  3. To prevent injury. You can run the risk of overtraining. Alongside this, it can increase your susceptibility to muscle soreness and also pose the risk of injuring yourself in the long run.
  4. To stay motivated. It’s great to have the eagerness to train on a daily basis, but if you do too much you will lose the enthusiasm for doing your workout and the quantity will outweigh the quality of the workout. It is better to train less but focus all the attention on the days that you are training.
  5. Because you can. You may have a lot to do on a particular day or you may simply just not feel like going to the gym or doing exercise. That is okay as well, because resting both physically and mentally are equally as important as one another. 

Next time you feel guilty for taking a rest day, remember the above. Making progress means having a rest. Your body will thank you for it and you will come back stronger. 


Wake Up Your Metabolism

I want to talk about reverse dieting. 

Firstly, our bodies are very good at adapting. If we are eating low calories, our body learns to run on that. 

However, if we are eating lower calories and want to gain muscle and lose fat, it wont happen. 

We need to upregulate metabolism by increasing food and decreasing the amount of cardio that we do. 

You should reverse diet if you are coming out of a low calorie diet, if you are hungry more often than not, if you want to fix your metabolism and recover better from exercise.

Reverse dieting has many benefits such as, increased NEAT and energy, improved recovery and being able to enjoy food freely. 

Just the same way we train our body to survive on less calories, we can also train it to eat more food. 

Life Goes Faster On Protein

Many people talk about the post workout anabolic window and how we must eat your protein as soon as you finish your workout in order to get the best results. 

Yes, I do think you should consume protein post workout but it doesn’t need to be within a certain time frame.

Our body needs the time to settle back to it’s parasympathetic state after you finish exercising so that digestion isn’t compromised. 

As long as we eat balanced a few hours after we workout it is all good.

It isn’t vital that we have our protein the form of a shake. 

Whatever you enjoy is fine. I have a shake because I like the taste, it helps me with my recovery and also helps me hit my allocated protein goals for the day. 

Live and Let Live

With Christmas coming up, I thought I would talk about how I enjoy having time off my routine but at the same time having it keeps me sane and on track.

If you do not have a plan, then you don’t have a direction.

Taking time off wont ruin the progress that you have made.

A few things that I like to remember when I have trouble taking a break are:

  1. Consistency is worth more than perfection
  2. One week will not ruin everything
  3. It is important to allow our body to rest and recover
  4. Life is for living and needs to be enjoyed.

Have a good Christmas with good food and make the best out of the situation.

Food Is Health Care

When we are either sick or injured, we instantly think that the right thing is to drop calories.

This is not the correct move. I repeat, this is not right at all.

Let me tell you why.

Healing physically uses up lots of energy. Infections, muscle and bone recovery use alot more extra energy.

Calories are units of energy. If we have less calories, we have less energy. This means a longer recovery period.

The calories that we burn through exercising are actually only a small proportion of the total calories that our body requires. Most are needed when we rest.

The best thing to do is to keep your intake consistent and only adapt it if it is highly necessary.

If you notice that you are consistently gaining weight then drop food slightly, or if you are dropping weight because your body is using more energy, increase your food slightly.

The main thing is to listen to your body and give it what it needs.