Benefits of taking a break

Taking a break…. and getting back on track

Letting your exercise regime slip during the summer break can reveal some unexpected benefits such as trying something new or simple recovery as the season comes to an end.

Holidays can break the usual routine of exercise, work, weekly meal preparation and general

household organisation. On the flip side, holidays present with having a bit more time on your hands, good weather (mostly!) and perhaps a new holiday destination to explore.

Summer holidays are also a time to relax, enjoy time with friends and family, take time off work, and perhaps let your exercise habit slide. We take a look at some of the benefits of taking a break from your exercise routine, then provide some helpful strategies about how to get back on track.

Benefits of taking a break from your exercise routine:

  1. It can encourage you to try something new. Venture outside and learn to ride a bike, explore the walking tracks around your area, or head further afield to enjoy some of the closely located national parks. Holidays offer more freedom with time, allowing you to indulge in something you wouldn’t ordinarily do between shifts. It doesn’t need to be high in intensity, keeping it light and enjoyable is still beneficial to your health.
  2. Your incidental activity increases. Watch that step-count climb. Much of our working day is spent sitting. Being on holidays generally means that we are more active throughout the day, which helps to keep our blood sugars in check. If you already haven’t done so, download a free pedometer to your smart phone to track your steps.
  3. It can help you recover from injury. If you’ve been noticing persistent aches or pains, your body might be signalling that it needs a break. Taking a few days or a week to rest can help the body start to heal before resuming with safe, ‘low-impact’ exercise.
  4. Work on other aspects of your health. Exercise is just part of the healthy lifestyle picture. Taking a break may help to work on other aspects of your health such as proper sleep, good nutrition, hydration, and your psychological well-being.

If you do find you’ve taken a longer break than you really wanted, it’s important to ease into your workouts so you avoid injury and misery.  Yes, it may feel like you’re starting over, but it won’t take very long for your body to get right back to where it was before your break.

Here are some tips to get back on track:

  1. Start slowly and build up: short workouts are better than none. Ease into your workouts to enhance adherence and avoid any unwanted injuries.
  2. Try a new recipe: chances are it’s not just your exercise that needs to get back on track. Cooking healthy foods can be fun doesn’t have to be bland.
  3. Book an update session: it might be time to mix-up your exercise program to revitalize your enthusiasm for exercise.

Taking some time off may be just what you need to get back to your workouts with more energy and enthusiasm.


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