• Gretchen

You don't have to crush every workout.

I love a really tough workout program. I love being breathless, sweating from all the places, and feeling completely exhilarated and like death at the same time. Those kind of workouts remind me of how strong I am, how capable I am of doing hard things, and how fortunate I am that I have the ability to move. It's something I do not take for granted.

But I'm also keenly aware that going hard all the time is the quickest way to burnout. Consistently lifting heavy or working in a state of high intensity can wreak havoc on your nervous system and set you up for injury. Working the same muscles in the same way or in the same movement patterns creates a body that isn't capable of resilience. Not only does your body need time to rest and repair after a tough workout, so does your psyche- it's impossible to enter an intense workout day after day with the same mental focus, stamina, and drive.

A well rounded fitness program should hit all the buttons. If you like to go hard like I do (and you most definitely do not have to), make sure you have days that incorporate some lighter stuff. If you like HIIT workouts, make sure some of your days have some more steady state moving. If you always lift heavy, it would be beneficial to add some lighter weight/higher rep stuff in your week. Everyone should include some form of mobility work either in their main workouts or on an 'active recovery' day. A typical week for me includes 2 days of lifting (with mobility), 1-2 days of HIIT (more mobility), 1 steady state cardio day, and 2-3 days of active recovery. That looks like long dog walks, yoga, more mobility work. I've seen the benefits of switching up the type of exercises that you do not only in myself but also in my clients. Both proper rest and variety in movement keeps you less susceptible to overuse injures, ups your quality of movement, and keeps you mentally engaged in your physical activities.

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