When you think about training, rest is not typically something that you are especially mindful of. In fact, often times rest is an afterthought. We typically think, “If I want to make gains in strength, endurance, weight loss, etc., then I need to train as much as possible.” However, what if I told you that you make the most gains when you rest… Would you be surprised? The fact of the matter is that when you train, you are slowly breaking your body down; it is when we rest that our body is rebuilt, stronger, faster, etc.. Rest is one of the most important aspects of your training program because the frequency, duration, and focus of your rest days is crucial to seeing the results you want. Here are a few tips to make the most of your rest:
Rest Every 3-4 Days
Because of the type of training the average hunter should be doing, rest should take place rather frequently. While a body builder may only rest every 6 days, he/she is only working each muscle group 1 time over the course of those 6 days. The average hunter should be doing high intensity cardio, multi-joint lifts, heavy lifts mixed with functional fitness routines, etc. so he/she will need to rest more frequently. A rest day every 3-4 days is the sweet spot for this kind of training.
Eat Carbs on Rest Days
Your body needs carbs… period. Yes, cutting carbs helps you to lose weight (partly because you are no longer consuming copious amounts of sugar), but carbs are essential to proper nutrition. Without carbs, your body cannot assimilate other nutrients which means that your protein shake is wasted if you don’t have carbs to help get the protein to your muscles. On rest days when your body is rebuilding, complex carbohydrates from sources such as grains, wheat, sweet potatoes, etc. are crucial.
Get 8-9 Hours of Sleep Every Night
Every night; not just on rest days. When you sleep, your body is running through essential rebuilding processes, as well as balancing your hormones. Without proper rest, your body is playing from behind constantly. Not to mention the fact that when you are getting too little sleep on a regular basis, you are at a greater risk for things like heart disease, diabetes, depression, suicidal thoughts, and the like. Get your sleep!
Rest Means Exactly That… REST!
A rest day does not mean that you only go for a run that day instead of lifting and running. It is a rest day, meaning you need to rest. Eat well, rest well, and you will train well when it is time to get back to it. But do not train on your rest days or you will find that it will have the adverse effect of what you are going for.
Rest is paramount to a successful training regimen. If you do not rest, you cannot recover and you cannot train well. Get your rest now and your body will thank you later.