Resting between workouts does NOT necessarily mean you should sit on the couch all day. In fact, it's recommended you continue to move to avoid stiffness and promote needed nutrient absorption into your tissues including your muscles via increased blood circulation. Active recovery involves exercising but at a reduced intensity level so that your heart rate will be somewhat elevated but avoiding excessive fatigue.
Here are some ideas on how to enhance your recovery between workouts:
- low-impact aerobic exercise (i.e., cycling, rowing, swimming, walking, elliptical, etc.)
- foam rolling (i.e., self-myofascial release)
BOTTOM LINE: Actively resting between workouts is beneficial in speeding up the recovery process (i.e., lessen muscle soreness), increasing your range of motion (i.e., stretching), lessening muscle stiffness, reducing stress, and improving your mood.
Brian Danley, CFT
"Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going."