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  • Writer's pictureAlexa

The Magic of Rest

We seem to live in a society that not only encourages but seems to programme us in to thinking we should be busy or "doing something" all the time. Productivity is seen as so important that doing "nothing" is seen as a waste of time, or even lazy.

From our body and brains perspective this really isn't true!

When we rest, our bodies can shift out of doing mode; where the energy and focus of our systems and metabolism is focussed on the task in hand; via activity in our brains, muscles. This is often accompanied by a lift in heart rate and heightened stress levels. This is a great mode for getting things done, from work to training. But there are downsides to being in that mode all the time. When we are in this doing mode some of our other systems are de-prioritised a bit; immune system and reproductive system for example. Also a whole host of processes in our brains, digestive systems and bodies that clean, tidy, repair and regenerate are put on hold.

When we are truely resting our bodies can kick in these recovery and restorative processes and these can bring us amazing benefits. From a better functioning immune system, clearer thinking and better memory through to faster recovery from training, injuries, illnesses and surgeries.

What do I mean by true or good quality rest?

It's time where you are physically inactive and doing something mentally calming.

People often think of meditation and this is, of course, brilliant. But there are other ways of getting into this calming rest time through mindfullness; sewing, writing, drawing, crafting, reading a good good, listening to music, watching a favourite (calm) TV programme, spending time sat outside listening to what's around you, being in the moment enjoying your morning shower or just pausing for 1 minute to savour the taste of that cup of coffee or tea you are drinking. The more of these moments of true rest you can pop into each day and week the more your body (and your training) will benefit!

How will you get more good quality rest time in your day?

Black man in wheelchair reading a book in a library

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