The Myth of More
So you want to get stronger? Lift more weights! You want to lose more body fat? Do more cardio! More, more, more is better! Right? Wrong. Don’t fall victim to The Myth of More.
The blanket statement that more is better can be potentially harmful to that body of yours. However, I have another blanket statement that will remain true. Here it is: Exercise intensely and then rest. Simple huh?
Counterintuitively, the benefits we are all seeking from our exercise come when we are out of the gym and our body is resting. It may surprise some people that exercising is not what actually makes our bodies stronger. When we rest, our body is literally rebuilding itself so that it can ultimately become stronger. This process is called supercompensation.
To go even deeper, 24-48 hours after a moderate to intense workout, your body removes metabolic wastes, replenishes energy stores, restoring your central nervous system, strengthens your immune system, repairs your muscles and restores your hormone levels. I’m sure you and I both need those hormone levels to stay in check! As for the waste that is produced in our bodies, products such as water, carbon dioxide, sodium chloride and nitrogen. It is paramount that we allow these different wastes to dwindle. This done by taking part in a four-letter word that we all love; REST.
With that said, don’t workout hard every single day. Studies say that two high-intensity workouts are sufficient to achieve most fitness goals. By going high-intensity twice a week with 48 hours between, your body has sufficient time to recover and prepare for the next blast of intensity. Perhaps the two most important things for us to do are get plenty of sleep and drink plenty of water. Recovery and taking care of your body is simple. It does not have to be complicated like Einstein’s general relativity equation. End message: Take rest days.