Hopefully you already know the importance of rest days and take them regularly. Some runners need several rest days a week, while others can get by with just one. There are also runners who can take them less frequently, but they are more of the exception and not the rule. So what do you do with yourself on a rest day? If you ever question what to do and not to do on a day off from working out, you’ve come to the right place! Let’s dig in.
What To Do on a Rest Day
A rest day is a great time to catch up on sleep! If you usually work out in the morning, you can sleep in instead. Or maybe you will have some extra time for a nap. Take advantage of getting some additional sleep!
Eat the same
You may even find that you are hungrier on your rest day, and that’s ok! Listen to your body and fuel it well. You need the same calories to recover on your rest day.
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Do all the recovery things that feel good, like foam rolling, stretching, massage gun, etc. If you like yoga that’s great too! Just make sure you really keep it easy. Don’t go taking an intense 90 minute hot yoga class!
Go for a walk
Walking is a great way to loosen up your legs. Getting outside will feel good too! Just take it easy and don’t walk for too long.
Catch up on other things
Everyone is busy and can use a few extra minutes in their day. Use the extra time that you’re not working out to do all the other things that you have been putting off. Maybe that’s laundry, cleaning the house, or meal prepping.
Get motivated for your next workout
A good rest day will leave you excited for your next workout. If you don’t feel ready to get back to working out again, take a look at your training plan and try to see if you are burnt out and need some more rest.
What Not to Do on a Rest Day
Just because you aren’t working out does not mean that you should restrict your calories. Remember that your body is working hard to recover and needs to be fueled well!
Do another workout
This is a rest day, not a cross-training day. There is a difference. Cross-training days are great, but you still need to make sure you are getting the full rest you need to perform your best. Maybe if you take two days off from running each week one can be for full rest and the other can be for cross-training or active recovery.
Stress about not working out
Remember that you earned this day off- you are not being lazy! Enjoy the relaxation and extra time. Focus on what you have accomplished and what you will be working towards next.
Be too physically active
Keep in mind that if you are doing chores around the house, if they get too intense they could impact your recovery. Of course, those things may need to get done. Just keep in mind that if they become too strenuous you may need to take an additional rest day.
Not everyone loves days off from running or working out, but they are important! Try to embrace the time off and make the most of it. Your body and mind will appreciate it if you take a rest day the right way.
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How To Schedule Rest Days From Running
What do you do on your rest days?
Do you like them or find it hard to rest?
How many days off do you take each week?