One of the biggest training mistakes you can make is that you do not give yourself rest one day per week. During exercise you use the flexibility, mobility and strength of your body. Training too often will ensure that your body can not function optimally anymore. And if your muscles don’t work for the full 100% your metabolism will neither. Because your muscles are mostly responsible for burning calories, tired muscles will burn less calories and less body fat.
Alternation between heavy and less demanding training days and taking a day off per week is the most effective way to prevent overtraining. Of course every body is different, so it is possible that you have to take a rest day every two days. On average, you need 24 to 48 hours to recover after an intensive workout. So what can you do on those resting days if you want to recover properly? The answer is: recovery exercises. We wrote 5 of those down for you:
Spine rotation (10 repetitions on each side)
For the muscles of your core and upper back: Lie with your left side on the floor, with your hips and knees bent at a 90 degree angle. Put both arms straight in front of you at shoulder height, palms pressed together. Your arm and your shoulder must touch the ground. Hold your left arm and both your legs in position, turn your right arm up and over your body, turn your torso to the right, until your right hand and upper back lie flat on the floor. Hold it for 2 seconds and then bring your right arm back to the starting position. Do all repetitions and then continue with the other side.
Stretches, rolls and lifts (10 repetitions on each side)
To move the mobility of your shoulders and upper body: sit on your knees and place your elbows on the floor, you are stuck between the limits. Make sure that your elbows are at an angle of 90 degrees and that your palms are flat on the floor. Slide your right hand forward until your arm is straight. Turn your right hand with the palm upwards. Raise your right arm as high as possible. Do all repetitions and follow with your left arm.
Standing hamstrings stretch (60 seconds on each side)
To stretch your hamstrings, from your hip to your knee: place your right foot on a seat bench. Your right leg must be completely straight, your left leg may be slightly bent. Stand upright with your back slightly bent and put your hands on your hips. Bend to the hips, while you keep your lower back straight, keep right and leave your upper body. Hold that position for one minute. By bending your knee more, the stretch at your hip is more intense, by keeping it straight you increase the stretch at your knee.
Sumo squat to standing (10 repetitions)
To release your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and lower back: stand upright with your feet on shoulder width. Keep your legs straight, bend over and touch your toes. (If you have to bend your knees, you can, but only if necessary, do not force anything.) Release your toes and lower your body into a squat. Stay in the squat position and raise your right arm. Then lift your left arm. Then stand up straight again.
Hip and thigh rotation (10 reps)
To loosen the muscles of your inner thighs and hips: go on your carpet with your knees bent 90 degrees. Your feet should lie flat on the floor and at a distance of double shoulder width apart. Without letting your feet move, you let yourself know. Hold this position for 1 of 2 seconds and start again.
In addition to these recovery exercises, you can also go outside for a long walk. This will help you to reduce the pains you might have caused by a really intensive work-out! Want to get more tips on great work-outs? Check-out our blog page!