Ever get that feeling I have to workout or I have to WOD today? I have and I still struggle with the idea of taking rest days. Over the years, I have experimented with quite a few different training protocols and programs. I can remember in high school trying to get stronger for sports, but not really knowing where to start, so I followed the Arnold Encyclopedia, not the worst place to start, but wasn’t exactly geared to help for soccer and basketball. In college, I just went to the weight room and did the standard bench, bi’s and abs workout, mixed with some running after. The military introduced me to bodyweight exercise and how it could be just as hard and painful as a lifting session in the gym. The military also introduced me to CrossFit, which has, in turn, open up many different training avenues I didn’t know or believe in. From Yoga to Olympic weightlifting I now am a firm believer in just getting up and moving your body in some form every day. Yes, I love CrossFit and hitting workouts with friends trying to beat your partner or clock, but I also enjoy going for a run, swimming on the beach, playing sports with friends or jumping on the slackline in the yard. These are all types of training and each can be beneficial.
I have found that it is very easy to get caught up in the “I have to do the WOD” mentality and there is nothing wrong with that, but I am a firm believer in listening to the body, and when it is tired maybe take a day off. Go for a walk in nature or on the beach, call some friends up and play a sport or just take a rest day to drink some coffee and watch the world go by. I have been there and I know the feeling that you must get the WOD in for the day or it is a bad day, in fact, I trained like that for 4+ years, scheduling my entire day/life around the workouts I had to complete. I’m not going to lie, it was fun and I enjoyed the training, but an older smarter me now understands that if I had just listened to my body I could have made those ever elusive Gainz even faster, I could have kept from getting injured, and having to take time off. All I needed was an extra rest day here or there, a day outside the gym to laugh and play. Take a look at your journey and remember the more fun you are having the happier and healthier you will be.