Your rest is tremendously significant to your weight loss success
Many people underestimate the importance of down time & sleep.
Heck, I was one of them!
I thought the more you do, the more you get out of it? Right?
Rest is when your body is able to take all the work you have done both in the gym & in the kitchen & all the information you have learned & put it to work.
Yup, while you sleep & rest, you body works. You do not build strength & lean muscle in the gym, your body does that while you are resting. You do not typically burn visceral fat in the gym (depending on your metabolic state) or by eating that kale, you do it while you are fasting i.e. sleeping.
So the question to ask is are you getting enough, quality rest, in both your workouts & your sleep at night?
Let’s start with your workout routine & the downtime you schedule in i.e. rest.
Looking at your gym schedule:
Do you give yourself at least 24 hours rest between lifting days/muscle groups?
How much cardio are in engaging in and what is the intensity level of it?
Are you over or under stressing your muscles?
How many weeks have you been doing the same routine?
These are question you can ask yourself that become the factors you can tweak if you are not seeing the weight loss you desire from your workouts.
If you are hitting a fitness and weight loss wall, you may be over training your body. Your body needs adequate rest in order to repair itself properly. Every time you work out, lift a weight, etc, you are literally tearing down your muscles. Yup, thats right, you are putting little micro tears in your muscles, so when you leave the gym, you are actually worse off than when you went there, both physically and hormonally. It is durning the downtime you give those torn muscles that they are able to repair and build that nice, calorie burning lean muscle you are hitting the gym for.
One of the tips that surprises my clients the most, other than to shift their rest time, when it comes to weight loss, is when I tell them to decrease their cardio; what I find is you may be over training in the cardio department & it is hindering your weight loss gains instead of helping (just that stress hormone, cortisol, at work against us again).
Good news is there are a variety of options you can choose form to change up your routine:
Full body circuits
Modes of cardio/exercise (think Swimming, Yoga, Tai Chi)
The sky's the limit on giving your body a challenging workout, bringing movement into your day, while also giving your body & muscles that R&R they need between workouts to give you your return on investment (ie summer strong mom bod).
Just change your routine up with one of the options from above, give your body that downtime between workouts that it needs & watch those inches melt off.
Next, let’s look at your nightly rest: sleep.
The average human needs between 7-9 hours of sleep every night. Now, it isn’t just about quantity, but also about quality.
How good is your sleep?
Is your sleep space set up for the best sleep possible?
What are your sleep habits like?
How are you feeling when you wake up?
What’s your energy like throughout the day?
If you feel groggy or unrested when you wake, sleep could be the culprit in your weight & health woes. Good news is there are many ways to improve your sleep and I cover them in my About Last Night blog if you think this could be a factor.
Hopefully now you can rest easy knowing how to incorporate downtime and that taking needed time off is not slacking off, but rather playing a vital role in supporting your health goals and weight loss journey.