Bodybuilding can be great fun, and the feeling you get in the gym whilst pushing yourself to the max, and getting an enormous pump can be second to none. But… don’t get caught up in the more is more idea by hitting the gym every day – you need to rest.
If your goals are to build good amounts of muscle in the quickest time possible, then you need to learn to hit the gym, work out with intensity, leave, and then rest. Without rest, you simply won’t grow.
True, you’re bound to see, or maybe even know, many people who work out 5 days a week or more, with no rest days in between. And, they may look terrific.
But, several scenarios could account for that:
- They are advanced trainees, and benefit from doing slightly more training.
- They are on steroids, which enhance recuperative abilities so much they can hit the gym more frequently and speed up gains.
- They are not an advanced trainee, they are not on steroids, but, they could make the exact same gains – possibly even more – by working out less frequently and resting more.
Some people are naturally active, and believe just because they feel ok to work out, that they should. They feel like they are almost cheating or slacking if they aren’t hitting the weights day in and day out. Resting is part and parcel of bodybuilding. Even the pro’s – who are as advanced as it gets, and use steroids like there is no tomorrow – who work out like machines need rest. If they didn’t get adequate rest for their bodies, they wouldn’t grow. It’s about training smart.
For most people, particularly a beginner to intermediate trainee, a workout 3 times a week, perhaps Monday, Wednesday, Friday, would suffice. This gives plenty of rest days. On rest days, you should actually rest. Avoid physical activities such as running and other sports, as this continues to tax the muscles, and burns calories which are needed for repair.
Never underestimate your bodies need for rest. My next point highlights this: there are studies which show that the overall body as a system becomes worn down and sluggish after prolonged periods of hard training – despite days off – and taking even as much as an entire month clean off from bodybuilding a year can help to ‘reset’ your system and produce great gains when you restart.
So, hit the gym hard and fast, get out, eat, and rest.