Strength Basics

Getting stronger, fitter, and healthier by sticking to the basics. It's not rocket science, it's doing the simple stuff the right way. Strength-Basics updates every Monday, plus extra posts during the week.

Friday, March 27, 2009

When in doubt, rest more

A common error of beginners and more advanced athletes alike is to rest too little.

It's tempting to think that training 6-7 days a week is better than 3-4 days a week. It's tempting to think that adding a few extra workouts here and there, or using "active rest" that consists of intense or long-duration sports, will burn some extra calories or improve your strength.

But really, all it does is take away from valuable rest. Your body doesn't improve during exercise, it doesn't get stronger in the gym. It gets weaker in the gym, and it runs down during exercise. The more intense your exercise, the more rest you need to recover from it.

You get stronger resting afterwards.

If your performance is dropping, your endurance is lower, your strength is more. Add a little more sleep, a little more time off. Your body might just need the extra time to recover.

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