Erin Lanahan Method

Signature method to get fit from the inside out!

Workout Wednesday- “Take A Week Off!” July 29, 2009

OK so don’t freak out thinking about taking a week off. Yes, I know who you are, lol. Honestly, I am dedicating this article to all you workout junkies and freaks out there, who NEVER take a week off OR to those of you who feel guilty if you do!

I have learned, over my lifetime of training intensely, that I do much better, and get better results, when I give myself a week off about every 6-8 weeks. This is either heaven for some people, or torture for others. It use to be torture for me, but now it is heaven, because I understand the importance of it to my fitness regimen, and I know from experience that I continue to progress as a result. I let myself train hard, then recover, so I can get back to training even harder, and bust through my plateaus. It makes perfect sense. It’s about training smarter, not over training just to end up getting sick, tired, and weak.

I have a friend who recently did a triathlon and he actually wanted to keep training the following week, after he competed. I told him he was crazy, and that the best thing for his body AND his training program, was to take off. I have several clients that are tri-athletes, and I watch them literally run their bodies into the ground. They are constantly sore, they always look tired, they can’t train as efficiently as they are capable of because they ARE tired, and therefore fail to get as good of results, and last but not least, they fall short of having much else accomplished other than their training schedule. You see, you don’t miss out or loose out on anything when you take this break. In fact, quite the opposite happens. You come back with a bang, all strong and rested and with a new determination because you are mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually rested.

During this week off, I suggest REALLY taking off. Some of us can actually go away for the week, but if you cannot do that, then just do your best to do ONLY the things that feel simple and that honor you. For example, maybe you go out to dinner every night and have someone else cook for you. Or, go buy that book you’ve been hearing about for months now, that you “haven’t had the time for” in your busy schedule, and just read. Go see a movie or two or three. Lay on your couch and stare at the ceiling. I don’t care, as long as it serves you and honors you in a peaceful, joyous, and restful way.

Do you have trouble resting? Or are you one of those people who just got excited because you now have permission to dodge the gym, running, or bootcamp for a week? I would love to hear your story and what you tend to struggle with at times! Please leave all your questions and comments here for me on the blog!!! Here’s To Your Health!


This is a great video explaining getting stronger vs. over training, and why you should take time off to recover!!


2 Responses to “Workout Wednesday- “Take A Week Off!””

  1. Alex N Says:

    Oh god. I will absolutely need to ask about this one! How do you get over the neurotic aspect of exercise? I equate exercise with letting off steam and ultimately re-energizing myself. Is this just a matter of individual mindset? I do understand the notion of exercise fatigue, but do the mental health benefits of pushing yourself out of the black cloud or lethargy outweigh the physical side effects of overexercising?

  2. Erin Lanahan Says:

    Good question there Alex. You should watch this You-tube video, associated with my post, if you haven’t already. There is a difference between fatique/lethargy and over-training. When you are over-trained, you will typically not be able to come through that lethargic and or sore feeling. When you are over-trained, it will be almost impossible to fully recover and feel re-energized and rejuevenated from exercise, because you will essentially be breaking your body down more and more until it is rested for a long enough time to recover and rebuild.

    I am a big believer in using exercise for mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being, and think it is a very effective way to shift ourselves from a dark place to a light place. Everyone is different, and so yes, therefore, depending on the individuals mindset, exercise and the routines you have will vary and be based on you, the individual. Just make sure that you are also balancing your well-beingness out with the proper amount of down-time. Now, that may mean a light walk or dance, or circuit workout for you, but also, make sure you stay in tune with your body and when it is asking for rest.

    Personally, exercise helps me out of the black cloud lots of times, but then I can go past the point of it helping me when I start to put too much time into exercise and not enough into other things that are equally as important and that honor my needs in the same way. So, yes, we are all different and require different amounts of things, however, we all need a good balance between all our needs. So just be aware of what your needs are, and then work on staying in alignment with all of them. Here’s To Your Health!!!

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