Hi guys,  Kris from Custom Fitness here, your Amarillo personal trainer. Today we’re going to be asking the question: can you get better results by not working harder? If you have any questions about today’s blog, then please give us a call at (806) 322-3188

So, can you get better results by not working harder? Well, the truth is that there’s a way to achieve that.

It’s January, everyone thinks that if you push harder you’ll be better, if you just do more you can get to where you need to be. Whether it’s fat loss or weight gain, whatever it is, you have to keep pushing and pushing. This leads people into doing workouts that last an hour to an hour and a half, sometimes doing workouts two to three times a day, and eating foods that they absolutely can’t stand and because of all of this they feel like they’re in prison. Basically they’re completely deprived of anything that they might enjoy in life, and that’s not the way to be. Trust me, that will not work if you want consistency.

You want to be sure that everything you’re doing is going to be consistently moving you towards your goal. So that’s really your thought process everyday. When you wake up, ask yourself “What am I going to do today to move me one step closer to my goal?” Yes, it’s only one step, but if you take a thousand of those steps, or just a year’s worth, you’re going to feel very different by the end of those steps. Even by the middle of those steps, you’ll be feeling a big change.

So each time you take a step towards your goals, then you also have to consider, now that you’ve pushed harder and worked harder, now what should you do to recover?

Some people are terrified of that word. They think that recover means rest. They think that if they take a day off from the gym they’ll break routine and mess up their progress. What they need to realize is that recovery is a part of that routine, and that resting is a piece of recovery but not the whole thing.

So, rest is to recovery, what REM is to your sleep cycle. It’s a piece of it, not the full thing. Yes, rest is important and you don’t want to over train or else you’ll just be working backwards. But, if you don’t recover correctly, you won’t see the results that you want to see. Why? You know you burned a lot of calories during your workout and did this and that, so you think you know what results you should be seeing. Well the problem becomes, and you may not know this, but your body actually produces results during recovery more than it does during your workouts. In your workout you’re breaking down the body internally, and during recovery you start to rebuild the body and refuel the body by replacing the stores that you burned.

So, that’s actually the difference there. During a recovery workout (so it still can be a workout) it’s actually replacing and rebuilding your stores to get the body back to a place where it can work again.

So each time that you do something, like lifting weights for example, you make little microtears in the muscle that causes the muscle to stop and repair itself which causes it to build a little bit bigger and stronger. Now for women, don’t let those words scare you, it just means that you’re building muscle tone. That’s actually what you’re wanting. When men body build or just build up their muscles, they just do it on a more extreme basis and that causes a larger change, along with the hormones that they have. Most women don’t have the hormone base that it takes to build up a bulky structure, rather we have enough to build muscle tone. In either case, that’s what’s happening physiologically. You break down those muscles, and you use those recovery times to build them back up.

So, what kind of recovery workouts are you going to do to rebuild your body, and get better results? Some of my favorites are yoga, pilates, stretching, light walking, a little jogging, even some myofascial release with a foam roller or a stick are great recovery workouts to do.

So the goal is to kind of have an active rest, or a recovery day, at a couple of times a week, and to not have them side by side.

A lot of people like doing the monday through friday workout with the weekends off, and that’s great except that during that two day break, you lower your metabolism, and you don’t give yourself enough fuel to keep going for the next week. So if you can break those up, it’s going to make your workouts better because you’ve had more time to recover in between, and less intensity in between those recovery times. So if you can plan some yoga or pilates into your workout schedule, or some myofascial release, or some light walking or jogging, then those would be some great things to add in.

Now, here’s the other thing, when you build those recovery workouts into your set exercise program for the week, you’re actually going to increase your strength, endurance, power, and even your flexibility some. Your body is going to be able to function at a higher level, and your movement patterns are going to be able to go deeper into each movement. This means that you’re firing off more muscle fibers, which in turn means that you’re breaking down the body a little bit deeper, and therefore going to enhance the results that you’re seeing as you recover again.

So, that may get a little science-y for you, but we want to break down the body to a certain level. If you do too much that’s called overtraining; that’s where you break your body down so much that it can’t recover. It doesn’t have the proper fuel to replace the stores, it doesn’t have the proper time or recovery time or rest time to rebuild the muscles and get everything back to where it needs to be in order to move on to the next workout.

So to summarize, it’s super important to add in those recovery days -those recovery workouts- to your program to make sure that you’re getting the most benefit out of the hard work that you are doing. Sometimes you have to lighten the load to see that benefit though. So make sure that you’re planning ahead as you’re doing that. Ask for help from a professional. By all means call us! I’m a personal trainer in Amarillo, and I have a whole team ready to help you.

If you’re wanting the accountability and help with creating an action plan to see results, or are wanting to someone to help create a workout plan to push you to your greatest potential, then that’s what we’re here for. We work those recovery times into our client’s routines to ensure that they see the best possible results. We have an entire team of dedicated professionals to help you with your health and fitness goals. To get your consultation set up, give us a call at 806-322-3188 or email us at info@customfitness.biz At Custom Fitness, we are YOUR personal trainers in Amarillo, Texas. Have a great day.