Work out every other day

Today I will hammer a point I have been making for years now.  For best fitness results, whether you use fitness sandbags, bodyweight, running, or other exercise strategies, you must recover fully from your workout for your body and its muscles to grow and strengthen.  You must recover fully for the workout you have done to deliverits full benefits.

I have said over and over again, do your workouts every other day.  I will say it again.  I know of no other trainer or fitness authority who says this.  This is a strategy I developed in the 90's while training for mounatain climbing.  It worked then and it works now.

If you ask somebody who sells a service, such as the use of their gym or personal training, how often you should work out, they will tell you to do it much more often than every other day.  While most of these trainers have much better credentials than I, they are biased.  Here is why.  If you ask a widget salesman, "How many widgets should I buy?", they will tell you, "Buy more".  That is the quick explanation of what gym owners and personal trainers are telling you.  Buy more of their services, not less.

But the biological facts are, when you stress your muscles, it creates tiny tears in the muscle tissue.  These tears need a day of recovery to repair the damage and rebuilt the tissue to be stronger than it was before.  And that is the importance of having equal recovery time to equal muscle stress time.  It's that simple.

There's more.  Sometimes you have a chore around home or away to do.  And this chore involves hard physical work.  It is my suggestion that you skip the workout on these occasions and call the chore the workout.  And do the chore on a workout day, so you will have the recovery day after it to recover.  If you do some scheduling, it will work for you.

Often I have to work in my yard.  It is quite rocky where I live.  To dig any hole, for planting or transplanting, requires using a pickaxe.  And swingin that pickaxe is quite a workout.  I make sure to do this on a workout day and take the next day to recover.  In winter, I sometimes split wood from logs that have been cut.  Again, this is quite a hard task.  It is done with a sledge hammer and wedge.  And again, it is done on a workout day instead of a workout and with the recovery day afterwards.

Sometimes, I make a workout resemble work.  A good example of this is what I call the tire workout.  I use an old pickup truck tire and a sledge hammer.  I will do some variation of either running or carrying the tire down and up my hilly driveway and then beating the tire with the sledge hammer.  

Work out every other day because it works. See our sandbag training page here.

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