World Mental Health Day
At Wonder Woman Workshops we love to train, it’s a given. The most enjoyable way to spend our time is shifting some heavy weights or even going for a run and this is echoed by many of the people we train with. This means that rest days are often something which is often neglected in favour of pushing a bit harder to reach a goal with a ‘more is always more’ attitude.
However, this ‘all or nothing’ frame of mind can often be detrimental when it comes to training, and that day off can actually help you achieve that longed for PB and is important when it comes to our mental health.
When we train, we put our body through a great deal of stress. This causes our immune systems to activate, in order to repair a muscle tear or a strained joint. By resting, it allows our bodies to catch up, stopping that tight calf muscle into developing into shin splints or Achilles problems. In short, over-training can lead to excessive fatigue, decreased performance, an increased likelihood of injury and, in some cases, can affect your sleep for the worse which further slows down your recovery rate.
The amount of rest days you take depends on how you train. Sometimes, you can get away with training a different part of your body (legs on Monday, arms on Tuesday etc.) or working on mobility rather than lifting heavy or getting your heart-rate up; you can also speed up your recovery by keeping track of your nutrition and refuelling appropriately. But other times, a proper day off from training is what’s needed – but try and keep moving, a rest day doesn’t entail sitting down all day and doing nothing.
It’s also important to consider our mental wellbeing. We all lead incredibly busy lives and, with that, all train hard and take on some amazing challenges.
But sometimes it’s important to step back and reflect on how far you’ve come. Your body has done some incredible things, and sometimes you need to show it the kindness of some rest and recuperation.
If you’re feeling tired, washed-out and overworked, it might be a good idea to take yourself for a long walk rather than that 20 mile run. Or maybe you could arrange to see your training buddies outside of the gym and go and do something interesting and fun. Recently, we all went on a speed boat experience up and down the Thames, then had a BBQ in the afternoon. It was great fun and gave everyone a chance to catch up, have fun and relax.
So on this World Mental Health Day, take some time to step back and look at how far you’ve come, rather than how far you may be away from your goal. Go and make yourself a cup of tea, talk to your loved ones and enjoy living.