Why You Need To Rest - Runner
Books to Improve your Running
One of the common misconceptions about running
is that running every day is the best idea for improving performance. These
runners may believe this because they think by running every day they are giving
themselves the most practice and the best opportunity to build up strength,
speed and endurance. However, this is flawed logic because the body actually
needs rest days to recover and improve. This article will provide some helpful
information on how often runners should rest and will also explain why this rest
is so important.
Joint health is one of the most important reasons why runners need to schedule
regular rest days into their training regimen. These rest days are critical
because running is a sport which results in a great deal of impact on the
joints. The repetitive nature of running results in pounding on the joints of
the ankles, knees and hips with each and every stride. Allowing a few rest days
during the week will give these joints the much needed rest they need to heal
from the repetitive pounding. Without this rest the joints may regularly be sore
Rest days are also necessary for runners because without regularly scheduled
rest days the runner is at risk for injuries and issues which are commonly
associated with overtraining. For example
shin splints and
stress fractures are
very common overuse injuries which typically occur when a runner is putting too
much stress on the body and not allowing regular rest days for recovery. Once
these injuries occur they can be very difficult to overcome and a lengthy period
of not running is typically required before the runner is fully healed.
Another reason why rest days are so important to runners is they allow the
runner to not only recover but also improve. It is important to realize rest
days are when improvements are actually made as opposed to during the days when
the runner is training. This is because the training process breaks down the
muscle fibers while the rest days allow the muscles to have time to repair and
strengthen. When this happens speed, endurance and strength are all improved.
Therefore, rest days are absolutely necessary for a runner to realize the payoff
for all of his hard work.
There are a couple of different ways in which runners can incorporate rest days
into a training program. The most obvious days are by having regularly scheduled
days where no running or other types of exercise take place. These days of
complete rest are ideal for giving a runnerís body the chance to recover that he
needs. The amount of rest required will depend on a number of different factors
though. Some runners may find as little as one day off each week is enough for
them to allow their body to recover. However, other runners may find taking 2-3
days off each week is necessary for muscle recovery. Additionally, most runners
will likely find rest days are extremely beneficial the day after an extremely
hard workout such as an interval workout. These workouts are very taxing on the
body and implementing a rest day following an interval workout gives the runner
the chance to recover properly.
Another option for runners seeking rest days is to schedule days in which they
cross train or participate in a low impact form of exercise instead of running.
This may include running in the water or doing a completely unrelated activity
such as swimming. These days are considered to be forms of rest because they
give the joints and muscles commonly used in running a break.