Taking a Week Off Exercise
This is a discussion from my Happy Eaters site, but it reminded me of when I used to blog about my life and my workouts and stuff, so I'm posting it here too.
I have a twinge in my right shoulder. I like to think that it's the result of weeks of heavy military presses, but I have a sneaking suspicion I did it lying in bed pulling on the comforters at a weird angle (the dreaded loaded external rotation). I can't bring myself to say I hurt myself making the bed though. It was the heavy military presses, yeah, that's it!
Anyway, shoulders are not to be trifled with. A little twinge turns into a nagging pain, turns into a screaming impingement, turns into surgery before you can say, ow. So, I'm going to do the prudent thing and give it a break for a week before I make anymore beds or press anymore kettlebells.
I'm excited about this! Both because I feel like I actually need a break (my left foot has been a little tricky lately too) and because I always lose weight when I stop exercising. Always. I think it must be a muscle pump, glycogen, appetite thing. Plus, whenever I've managed to take some time off, I always come back rested and strong with newfound enthusiasm. A week from tomorrow I'll start a System Six 20 rep endurance phase with much lighter weights than I've been using, assuming I feel nothing twingy in my shoulder. I'll still walk the dog every day but that's about it.
- Do you willingly take a break from exercising once in a while? Or does it have to be forced?
- Does it feel good to take a break or does it make you panicky?
- If you panic, what are you afraid of?
- Have your feelings about "time off" changed over the years?
I used to be a total lunatic, gobbling pain killers and training with broken bones. I honestly don't know what I was so afraid of or trying to prove. I just would not could not quit, even though I could tell other people to do it and list all the benefits! I could even use myself as a cautionary tale. I think what cured me is breaking my leg, tearing my ACL, and not being able to walk for 8 weeks. Nothing bad happened! I didn't gain weight, my muscle came right back. It was totally fine.
I would love to hear everyone's thoughts on taking time off.
Rest Day 1- I'm down a pound and a half (for mysterious reasons I can never understand), feeling good, eating cookies. Trader Joe's Pinachios are like crack. I've been having 5-6 per day, every day. I should probably knock it off but you would not want to try to take the container from me right now. MINE!!! They're MINE!!!
My shoulder feels better already. I experienced a minor twinge all day yesterday. Today I don't feel it at all unless I move it the wrong way. This is the kind of niggling little injury that I previously would have ignored and made worse until they had to amputate my arm or something.
I'm geeked about my rest week and know it's the right thing to do. Although the devil on my left shoulder just said, "See, it's better. You can lift tomorrow." I fed him a cookie. :-)
Rest day 2 - I woke up this morning and my shoulder felt like it was on fire. It really hurt, which terrified me, but I think maybe I just slept on it wrong because it feels ok now. The pain was a good little reality check though. It removed any temptation to lift heavy things today. I walked the dog. Picture the scene. Both of us injured and wearing matching hot pink workout gear, she in her hot pink no-pull harness and me in my hot pink and black Nike Free shoes and running tights. We look like we're ready for business, but we stroll along at 1.89 MPH, for exactly .15 miles, and then we have to turn around because .30 miles is her safety zone. That gets us a little over a block down the street and back. LOL I use a GPS so I don't accidentally take her too far. What a dork fest.
Normally, I workout right after the walk so I felt a little displaced today. I decided that I would spend some time on the internets and then watch The Walking Dead before lunch. I used to watch it during lunch but I was eating the day the bloated water zombie broke in half and his intestines sprang out. That pretty much cured me of eating during zombie shows.
Speaking of eating, my weight is the same today, which is good because I kept going on the white chocolate pistachio butter cookies yesterday. They're gone now. They're in ma bellllay! Not a problem because I am a master of dietary displacement. If I want a bunch of cookies, I'll cut back on real food to make it happen. I sacrificed 2 eggs, a tablespoon of peanut butter, a piece of cheese, and 2 dark chocolate squares for a few more cookies. I imagine that if I did that every day, I wouldn't look or feel very good, but once in awhile when I need sugar, that's how I do it. All the treats, no overeats.
Posted by skwigg
at 9:15 AM CST
Updated: Monday, 20 February 2012 9:36 AM CST