rest day

DISCLAIMER! This post is primarily for the go-hard-or-go-home crowd! If you aren’t a regular exerciser, STOP RESTING. If you work out all the time, maybe you need to cut yourself a break.

If you attended the fat-burning workshop at Bangor-Brewer Athletic Club a couple weeks ago, you know that REST is one of the three keys to losing weight/reducing body fat. You need rest. Take a day off from your workouts at least once a week. If not today, then another day. It’s part of the process.

I’m taking today, Sunday, off. Happily and without apologies.

Inadequate ┬árest throws your hormones out of whack. I could go into a whole treatise about that — cortisol, human growth hormone, blahblahblah — but I won’t. Your hormones need to be firmly IN whack (technical term) for your body to lose fat. The older you get, the more you have to keep the balance between rest and work. So rest. And then work.

You can stop reading now, or you can continue on for my cautionary tale.

Due to work issues last summer/fall, I had to do a lot of extra physical labor. For a time, I did lose body fat with all that extra work, which was pretty cool because I am/was/might still be doing a physique-related competition later this year. ┬áBut after a couple months I stopped losing the fat and plateaued. And I was constantly tired, craving carbs, and feeling generally like crud. And then I became ill — and even though I was sitting around a lot more than usual for several weeks, I lost weight and my cravings diminished dramatically despite the fact I was on a medication notorious for weight gain. I still ate as much as a normal person would eat (and maybe even a little more than that) but suddenly I could fit into jeans I bought the day of my last figure show — and those are some TINY jeans!

How could this happen? Moving less, eating about the same? My body needed the break! I was overtrained. And when it was rested up, everything returned to normal (and I am no longer having to do the extra physical labor, yay!).

So take a day of rest, k?