Doing this one thing can improve your running performance! That one thing is...taking your rest days seriously!! I know what you are thinking... that you love to push yourself. You love your training schedule and may even push the pace or shorten your cooldown so you have more time to get more reps & work in. Maybe when it comes to your rest day you maybe go for a long walk or go to the gym and you're really working even though it is a rest day. Sound familiar?
Here is an equation for you. Rest + stress= growth. Now when I say growth I'm talking about a few things. The first is muscle growth, we want to make the muscles stronger. The second one is mental grit, we want to make our mindset stronger too (it is a really important part to making us a stronger runner).
What is stress?
When I say stress I mean the stress of being an athlete. For example, your training plan, lifting weights, doing track workouts. That is stress and that is good stress! What I mean by that is you put a stressor on the body so that your body can respond and adapt and become stronger. So we definitely need stress in our training plans when we are getting ready for a race.
However, in order for your body to adapt and grow you need to rest. Your muscles cannot get stronger and your legs cannot adapt if you are treating your rest day like it's just another day of training. One of the easiest things you can do to become a stronger athlete this year is to rest and give your body the materials it needs to adapt and grow and become stronger. We need to find ways to create rest and a period of adaptation in our schedule.
In my group coaching program Food Freedom Fit Fam we talk about having a mindset where you have permission to rest and to use that rest efficiently to promote adaptation. We talk about how to prioritize using nutrition every single day to help you adapt to the stress of your training. In this group you train in way to help you meet your fullest potential. That is what you want, isn't it? If you struggle with resting on your rest days or eating enough on your rest days, click here and let's chat about working together!