I've been at the gym 3 days a week, every week (With the exception of 4 weeks in total due to illnesses) for the last year.
I know I've read somewhere the benefits of taking a couple of weeks off, when you're not sick, to give your body some rest. I never felt the need but I think I'm going to just to get myself some rest and relaxation.
I was wondering what are the actual physiological benefits to resting from the gym every few months? Or is there a time frame that many follow (Gym 3 months, rest 2 weeks, repeat).
Also, do you adjust your diet slightly for the time you're off? Do you allow yourself to eat food you may not normally have because it's not part of your diet (Potato chips, beer) Or do you continue to eat clean?
Is there anything else that you do to help get the most of your time off?
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A lot of people will take a week off from the gym every couple of months if they reach a point where they feel burnt out or stop making progress. There are also some training programs that build in what is referred to as a "de-load" which is basically a low intensity and low volume training week every few weeks to allow your body to recover.
If you feel that you need some time off from the gym you could do mobility/flexibility work or low intensity cardiovascular workouts - both of which could provide overall benefit with regard to your physique and performance.
Take at least a week. Maybe two and relax. You'll be itching to get back in there and you'll feel refreshed.
I don't do anything during my week off except eat healthy.
I've been using the gym for a year and a half without any week long rest breaks, so I decided to take one this past week. All I've done is slept longer, attempted to eat more, and do a lot of stretching. I took the time off because my upper body lifts hit a plateau and because I got a hip injury from squatting which was made worse by an accident unrelated to the gym. I still have another 2 days of rest, and I feel great and ready to go back.
Ever go on vacation? Just take a break at that time.
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I feel if I take a week off after going hard for a few months, it gives my body time to fully recover, in effect letting me get back into weight lifting at 110%.
A small break can also help recover and minor problems you could be having.
it sounds weird but whenever i take a break, a week or three, i usually feel stronger which is great!
H - 185cm (6'1") W - 94 kg (207 lbs) Age - 37
goal 1 - go from 77kg to 85kg DONE 10-05-01
- 10-08-03 back down to 82 kilos after 4 weeks of biking around iceland - time to eat eat eat again...
goal 2 - reach 90 kg by new years! - not quite. reached 90kg 11-03-01
11-05-24 got upto 93kilos!!
11-07-04 back down to 88 after two weeks of hiking
12-07-20 am at 94kilos!!! now to loose excess fat doing HIIT
12-12-01 check fat % - should be better