Ahh... I've been waiting all week for this day. The day my feet, knees, calves, quads, hamstrings, core, and BRAIN gets to recover from all the mess I put myself through since my last day off (last week Tuesday). The day that my "workout plan" says STRETCH and that's it! No spin class, no weight lifting, no running, just resting and recovering. And maybe some Ben & Jerry's.
Sometimes it's hard for me to take a day off from working out. I'll get out of work and think "You know what? I feel fine today, and today is a perfectly good day to train so why waste it!" but Hal Higdon has a lot to say about the benefits of rest and I figure he probably knows better than I do. Ed Eyestone of Runner's World Magazine says that a rest day is as crucial to his training as a long run. Does that mean I'm off the hook for tomorrow's 14-miler????!!
Back to the subject of stretching, behold- one of the best tricks I learned from Chris G at Synergy Yoga.
The Pigeon Pose
It can be difficult and painful at first- but once you're able to relax into this pose, it works wonders for hip/glute tightness! I like to listen to classical music while I'm stretching because it makes me feel like a beautiful, graceful ballerina (or maybe it's because I get so damn tired of Ke$ha and Lil' Wayne by the end of a workout). Last week, I listened to Claude Debussy's "Menuett" as I stretched each hip flexor and I'm telling you- it totally transported me. Duuude...
And for the days when I'm feeling EXTRA fancy...
But gosh- that looks like way too much work for this rest day. And you can't devour a pint of Ben & Jerry's Chubby Hubby with your arms all twisted up like that!