Can we talk about rest please?
Movement is important for the function of every part of your physiology. And yet it seems to be the first (and perhaps only) thing we take off our plates when we feel the need to rest.
Our bodies come equipped with built-in mechanisms to heal, nourish, and grow. Movement is essential for stimulating many of those amazing internal functions.
When you choose to not move your body because you’re feeling tired, please consider what it is it that you’re tired from. When you feel the need to skip exercise and rest, what is it that you need rest from?
Be specific so you can be more intentional:
👉🏼Is job stress wearing you out? Take an intentional rest from work.
👉🏼Is social media wiping you out? Take an intentional rest from the apps on your phone.
👉🏼Maxed out by the current events or the news? Take an intentional rest from dwelling and ruminating.
Personally, when I’m worn out by my work, social media, or current events, movement actually HELPS me feel better — it provides the space to rest my mind as I step away from these stressors for a while.
Conversely, when I’m feeling mentally overwhelmed and skip exercise and call it “rest”, what usually ends up happening is that I use the time to keep working, keep scrolling, and keep taking in current events — ultimately draining the batteries even more. My “rest” then doesn’t feel recuperative, it feels exhausting.
Of course, there will be times when the right answer is rest your body. If you’re fatigued from your hike or run yesterday, then yes please give your body an intentional rest. After all, physical rest is also necessary for health.
But don’t continue to neglect the needs of your body and call it “rest” when you’re not actually taking rest from the things that are making you feel so tired and maxed out.
A good test: If your “rest” is not helping or is making you feel worse, odds are you aren’t getting the right kind of rest.
Instead of skipping exercise entirely, go for a walk or do a few of your favorite stretches. It doesn’t need to be sweaty or vigorous — just move. Use the time to actually REST your mind from what’s truly wearing you out.