Those of you who lift: do you ever take breaks (beyond the usual 1-4 rest days per week built into your program)? How often, and for how long? I’ve been finding myself taking an entire week off every couple of months and wonder how much it’s setting me back.

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it’s called a deload. I usually go to 50% volume for a week once a month, but honestly a week once every few months will help you rest and reset.

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I find myself taking a week off relatively frequently because toddlers are chaos monsters that lay waste to even the best laid plans. I can’t say for sure that it’s the occasional week off that sets me back, but I am definitely back lol

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Back as in losing strength, mass, just not performing well..? Are you following a program?

One week every couple of months is fine, your not setting yourself back no worries

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If it gets you more motivated to get back and start crushing it then that’s a good thing. Also why the break? Is it planned or because of work?

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Associate OP is an inspiration to us all

If I feel I need a week off I hit cardio. Don't want to be a lifter that slowly walks to the weights ;)

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Yeah that definitely makes sense. I try to continue at least taking walks every day when I’m not lifting so I’m not just sitting around.

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I take time off exercising during vacation and sometimes I just lose interest in exercising so I will take off a few days to recalibrate. I try to never go longer than a week though. I feel like any longer and Its hard to get back in a routine.

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I let life and biofeedback determine extra time off for myself and clients!

I like to see AT LEAST 4 days IN A ROW, totally off, with food at maintenance if we’ve pushed real hard and I see signs of overtrainingz

+ with vacations or other life events I usually try to make that a recovery period.

Rest is CRUCIAL

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Sounds like you’re in a good spot!!

That week off is probably helping you recover and letting you heal from the stress if you’re heavy lifting. My bet is that it’s not setting you back at all, if not helping. When I used to lift (long before the dad bod) that recovery rest period usually meant I was coming back stronger. Do you track you progress? If you’re finding that you can’t lift the weights you were lifting before that week off then maybe you’re taking too much time off but I’d be shocked if you were steady lifting and finding that you were getting weaker after taking just a week off intermittently.

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Thanks. I think I suspected this too but still feel guilty/uneasy taking several days in a row off.

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For what it's worth, there was a semi recent study that showed people who train 3 weeks on and 1 week off have the same muscle gain as someone who trains 5 days a week and takes off two days a week.

It's really a personal preference on how you want to rest and take care of your body. 😀

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Yes. I find that when I take a week or two off every quarter, I come back stronger and refreshed. I typically do it after a major milestone, event, or end of a program. Not familiar with science, but it seems like long term memory setting in for your muscles. This seems to fit for both strength and endurance.

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I take either a deload week (lighter weights or less volume) or full rest weeks depending on how my body feels every 4-6 weeks. I'll know I'm startinf to become under-recovered when I start gettinf annoyed at waking up to lift or dreading my workouts (I *love* to train).

You gotta listen to your body sometimes. But there's a thin line between needing a deload versus just not being motivated (which happens to the best of us sometimes).

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