I acknowledge I should respect rest more than I do. I take 1 rest day per week, but sometimes – alright… often – I end up not taking any.
There was this one time when I ended up doing something quite stupid: I went about a month and a half without a single rest day. There were several reasons, including special events and friends asking me to tag along in classes. It wasn’t a “let’s see how far I can go” moment, time just passed. My body became so tired that I got to a point when I was feeling truly frustrated in class because I had a really hard time executing exercises which I usually handle with ease and I had to lower my weights on CxWorx because I felt really unstable with my usual weights.
I had to force myself to stop. Trust me, I didn’t want to. I felt super annoyed that I could be taking this or that class, but instead there I was just sitting on the couch. I recognized it wasn’t a “want” moment, it was a “need” moment. And one must do what is needed, even it we don’t feel like it.
I can say I learned to esteem rest as part of the cycle. At this point I’ll skip 1 rest day at the most and on the week up until the next rest day I’ll pay close attention to what my body “tells” me.
Below you’ll find an article – of so many available online – about the importance of rest after exercise, please do read it!
The Benefits of Rest and Recovery After Exercise
Dutch TV producer LifeHunters recently created a short film (6m35s) with the highlights of an experiment where a man completely gives up added sugar, artificial additives, and alcohol for a month.
I believe this crash approach is too extreme and completely unsustainable, but since it was just an experiment, sure, why not?
I have heard the expression “toxic environment” several times, and one of the things I like about this film is that it showcases how difficult it can be to “stay the course” when everything around you is set up to lead you into consuming food-like products, and that includes your friends. Saying one “just needs will power” is a gross understatement, and this video sort of touches that subject.
You also get a glimpse into the emotional hardship everyone should expect when first giving up sugar (even me, who took the baby-steps approach felt it). But it wears off, and afterwards you realize how much better you feel, and how the struggle was worth it.
Here’s the video, it’s short, enjoy:
Respect – appreciate the fine tuned “machine” we are born with & listen to it.
Fuel – with proper nourishment.
Challenge – step out of the comfort zone.
For almost 6 months now I’ve been taking the Friday 7am RPM class. It started out with a heat induced insomnia – I couldn’t sleep anyway, so why not head to the gym and try the class? – and I ended up becoming a regular.
Up until the day I took the 1st class if you had told me I would enjoy 1st:RPM and 2nd:the 7am class I would’ve laughed, and laughed and laughed…and called you insane.
I used to look at cycling classes like “argh, how boring is that? Just pedaling along for an hour… I’ll never like that.”
I used to think “how insane are those people? Getting up ultra early to workout before going to work, I’m never doing that”
And then I tried it.
To me RPM is a battle between my brain and my body. My body wants to slow down, to quit, and my brain doesn’t let it. Every week I notice progress, and every week I push harder. I enjoy that, a lot.
Also, it’s not super hard to get up at 6am when you look forward to what’s about to happen. Moreover, I notice that when I get to work I’m in a good mood and feeling refreshed (thanks endorphins ❤ ) and the day just flies by.
The 7am class is really one of those things you don’t know until you try it, and I believe it’s a love it or hate it moment. So why not try it yourself? You never know! (I sure didn’t…)
PS: Additionally, the look on people’s faces when you tell them you take the 7am class is priceless!! xD
I came across this article and even though I haven’t been able to completely give up added sugar yet (chocolate… my Achilles heel) I have SIGNIFICANTLY reduced its intake. Even without entirely removing added sugar, I can tell you I have experienced all 5 things, and there are many, many, more which aren’t listed here. Click on the link to read the article.
5 Things That Happen When You Quit Eating Sugar
Ps: Number 4 has become powerfully true for me: “Fruits will taste plenty sweet, and if you do take a bite of a cake or pie, you’ll be shocked at how overpowering and overly sweet it seems.”