Rest & Recovery


The warm weather makes me want to move. In the winter I have an afternoon routine which goes like this: workout, big lunch, siesta. As soon as it’s above 50 degrees and sunny that siesta goes out the window. I have a strong urge to be active, even when I am exhausted after a long morning of work and working out, and now in only April I feel its effects.

The honest truth is that I have a hard time skipping a workout. It gives me anxiety and sometimes makes me edgy, just ask my family. So even when I know I need a solid rest day of no activity outside of working with my clients, I fight it. It is something that I am constantly working to correct. I have definitely improved by dialing down the intensity of my workouts, but I still feel the need to go on a long walk or at least do some yoga on a rest day.

This week my body hit a wall. My muscles ached and my legs felt like led. Everything I did seemed tiring. Things that usually bring me solace, like walking my dog around the lakes exhausted me mentally and physically.

I have early days, leaving my house around 5:15-6:00 am each morning and getting home around 8:00 pm each night. While I have a good break in the day, the nature of my schedule is tiring. When I compound that with my activity level, it can be a recipe for fatigue. So yesterday (Friday), I turned off my early alarm to get up and workout and I slept an extra 90 minutes. I then went on to train a few clients followed by a long car ride. My activity level was very low for me. How do I feel today? I feel my energy level is double what it was mid week. While my muscles scream for Yoga after a long car ride to Virginia Beach, I look at my morning coffee and decide I don’t actually need it.

There is a point to this share. I have a lot of clients and friends that will skimp on sleep to get in a workout, but when our bodies are tired they do not perform well. Sleep is where we recover, and while it is important to fit your daily movement into your day, there are times when being well rested will trump a workout. It takes discipline to decide when skipping is actually appropriate. Listen to your body, and do not make excuses to skip a workout or even push through one when overtired.

So be mindful of your energy next time your early alarm goes off. Are you rested? Would you benefit from the extra sleep?