Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Thing About Rest Days

I love Rest Day. That day with a big blank on the calendar where a workout would ordinarily be. No scheduled workout, run or swim.

Occasionally, one rest day isn't enough, even if I ended up having a completely lazy day. Sometimes a second day is needed to rest a weary muscle, rest a weary body, take a mental break from the busy-ness of the active lifestyle, spend a bit of extra time with the family. 

And by the end of that second day, I'm refreshed and looking forward to getting back at it. That is, as long as I've been active in some way, like going for a family walk or hike or generally goofing around with the kids - skipping contests, playing catch, going skating, that sort of thing. Or even just taking the dog for a good, long walk. I think getting the heart rate up in some way every day generally helps with keeping the momentum going. 

But two lazy days in a row can be pretty dangerous, for me at least. Slippery slope territory.

See, I have noticed that the nagging voice in the back of my head pipes up on the morning of day 3. Who needs exercise when the bed is soooo soft. Gee, it's pretty chilly outside. Wouldn't it be great to just sit around the house in PJs again? Isn't it fabulous to have so much free time? Who needs exercise when you can reeeeeeelax?

And it's really, really tempting to listen to that voice. Expecially when it starts telling me that triple helpings of pizza, double chocolate cookies and a bowl of ice cream would go really well with a third day on the couch.

Why is that a problem? Because I know from my old life on the couch, and past experiences trying to change out of it, that three days can easily turn into four...into a week...and back into a sedentary lifestyle that's hard to break out of.
All of this is to say that I needed, and took, two rest days in a row at the end of last week. Didn't hear a peep from that little voice until it started whispering to me this morning. It took a heck of a lot of commitment and discipline to pull on sneakers and head out the door.

Funny how that little voice quieted down as soon as I made it to the front porch.

Lesson learned, I think - rest days should be playful, not slothful. For me at least.

Here's this week's recap -

Saturday - C25K week 6, run 2 (run 10 minutes, walk 3, run 10). Covered 3.1K. And man - it was windy! So windy that I was completely dry (not sweaty) when I finished.

Made a rather delicious vegetable-lentil stew this weekend. It's about the only way that I like sweet potatoes.

Sunday - 2K dog park walk. Saw the first robin of the season - and my husband came home from his trip!

Monday - Curves circuit + boot camp (200 squats, 350 crunches, 320 arm curls w/5lb weights)

Tuesday - C25K week 6, run 3 = 23 mins running in 10s and 1s. Covered 3.25K

Wednesday - Glorious weather today. Hit a park after school and another after dinner.  Before bed, ran C25K week 7, run 1 = 25 mins running in 10s and 1s. Covered 3.35K.

At the park/dog park on a stunningly beautiful evening.
Daughter was pretending she was Dorothy NOT falling into the pig pen from the start of The Wizard of Oz
Thursday - Fell asleep on the couch after dinner and missed Zumba. Decided to make today a rest day.

Friday - Still tired so took a second rest day. Crazy windy, cold and a lot of blowing snow. Took Stella to the dog park (2K round trip walk) for an hour. Brrrrrrrr.

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