Most of my life I have had this all or nothing attitude when it came to getting fit.
Sound Familiar? Maybe it’s you as well.
If I was going to diet, I was going to do it perfectly. I was not going to question my trainer why I was eating so little. I had to do it right-at a 100%-exact. I had to stick to the plan.
If I was going to do a weightlifting workout, I was going to do exactly as directed even if I were hurting or sore. Again, I had to get the workouts in 100%. No matter what!
If I were directed to do cardio 5 days a week, I did 5 days-even if I had taught 4 cardio classes that same week. They didn’t count.
Ok, I know it sounds ridiculous. But your trainer can only do so much. They can’t force you to rest!
Learning the Hard Way
Now, because I over-exercised and underate for way too many years, I am dealing with weightloss resistance, hypothyroidism, fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis. Some of these are hereditary but they are definitely aggravated by the abuse I put my body through.
It took me too many years and too many injuries (that I’m going to carry with me the rest of my life) to figure out that-REST- is an important component of your fitness routine.
Burnout is a very real thing. It can be from exercise, stress, heart break, illness, health conditions-chronic and acute as well as just life in general. Some doctors will go as far as calling it Adrenal Fatigue, but they are far and few in between! I experienced burnout in 2008 when coming off a competition diet. I just hit a wall. I was too depleted and ended up getting mono. I had a hard time recovering and I still get that deep set fatigue from time to time! Burnout is a very real condition!
So What Exactly is REST?
There are probably a ton of descriptions out there but I will give you mine. You should workout anywhere from 3-5 days a week. That is-weightlifting, cardio, yoga, fitness classes, walking and etc.
BUT-Rest is at the VERY least is taking 2 days off completely from exercise. Either in succession or break them up. It’s really what works for you!
If you are dealing with an injury, take longer.
If you are really sore, make sure you stretch or take an easy yoga class. Hot baths with epsom salt added and a drop or two of Deep Blue essential oil blend added can help with soreness as well!
This is probably your number one component to help in your getting fit journey!
I, on average, don’t require a lot of sleep-5-6 hours is about all I need!
But, in order for your body to recover and rebuild itself you need to be getting at least 7-8 hours of sleep a night. This also ensures that you have normal hormone regulation-especially cortisol. Cortisol levels should be higher in the morning and lowering throughout the day. When your sleep is messed up, it can cause an imbalance in your cortisol levels, which can cause weight gain and make getting fit harder!
You simply must eat well, if your body isn’t getting enough protein, carbohydrates and fats it can’t repair and replenish itself. Your can’t recover well if the body isn’t fed. I have learned this the hard way.
Protein is the building blocks for growing muscles. Think of it as you are building a LEGO house and you have some blocks missing. It can’t get any taller until you add those pieces! Carbohydrates are your quick energy stores, its like gasoline in your car. It gives it the short term energy to do your daily tasks. Fat is like your oil in your car. It’s there for the long haul and is pretty long lasting(Oil is there 3,000-5,000miles!!). Fat is your long store of energy. When the carbs run out your body will utilize fat for energy. Balance is so important for your body to run as the well built machine it is supposed to be!
What About You?
Sometimes you have to ask yourself the hard questions.
Are you over doing it? Are you taking the proper amount of rest days? Are you pushing yourself even when injured? Are you short changing yourself with sleep? Are you eating a good well rounded diet? Are you working out all the time, watching everything you eat and still not making progress?
Take time to reflect!
Let me know if you are dealing with these issues and I will be glad to help you work on fixing it!