Yes, your body needs rest to recover: that’s why you sleep at night. I’m a big believer in “listen to your body”, when you need a day off your body will let you know. I personally do not like to follow a specific schedule, I create a workout program: let’s say it’s a 5 day program. Each day will have its specific workout plan however it will not be assigned to a specific day, it’s just day 1, day 2, etc. So I start my new program on day 1 and I kick ass. Being that it’s a new program I will most likely feel soreness, this will not be so bad the next day, but 2 days later it may be brutal: so I may do 2 days take 1 off then get back to it the following day. I may not, I may be able to do 5 days before my body feels the need for a day off, or I may be able to go 15 days (which I have done at times, and more). I may need to take every other day of for the first couple of weeks until my body gets used to vigorous exercise.
Now for days off it’s the same listen to your body rule. If you have this schedule you have to follow, and the schedule says you have Sunday off to “recover” and start up again on Monday and Monday roles around and you’re still sore from kicking your ass all week, well then you need to take another day because your body needs it. Keep in mind your body doesn’t read a calendar every morning and say oh its Monday I’m ready to exercise. You have to listen to your body, Period.
And another thing, your abs are muscles just like your pecs or latts. So why is it that so many people (trainers included) feel that you need to rest all you muscles except abs? It makes me crazy when I hear people say “it’s ok to train abs everyday”. NO, it’s not. They are muscles (big muscles by the way) and they need the same recovery time as every other muscle group.
I just read a post on a Facebook group where one member told another who had just worked out on his “rest day” that he was “foolish” and had to take that rest so that his muscles could recover and it also helps prevent injury. Are you fucking kidding me? It helps prevent injury? What are you going to say next, you’ll “over train?
I hear this term often as well, “dude take it easy you don’t want to over train”. Do you have any idea what it takes to over train? I work out hard and often. I do Focus T25 every morning for my cardio. I lift 4 days a week and I train and teach martial arts and boot camp classes. The way my schedule is set I typical train 7 days a week. All my work outs are different and the intensity varies, so I’m working different muscles on different days and that gives my muscles time to recover. Well that and the fact that I sleep every night (that’s where the real recovery takes place).
So if you don’t want to take your rest day and you body is feeling good, then by all means go workout. If you’re scheduled to work out on a specific day and your body feels beat down, take the day off and pick up on the next, or the day after that.
Listen to your body and you can’t go wrong. Just like you shouldn’t force you body to perform when it’s feeling beat down, there’s no need to force a rest if you’re feeling good and want to work out. You won’t over train and you’re not risking injury. Just Listen to your body.. Oh yeah and make sure to sleep every night……