T Nation

Do You Need Pure Rest Days?

i have always believed that when your training your lower body for example, you upper is resting. but i heard that it doesn’t matter if its cardio, upper or lower. your not resting as long as your training. so you need rest days where you aren’t doing any training.

do you agree with this?

whats your opinion on rest days?

it depends

In general I disagree, as long as one is not getting sick. But yeah it depends. You definitely need at least a rest from the hard stuff–whether that’s hard weights or hard cardio/conditioning. But a day that you do something fun and active IMO is better than a full OFF day. Keeps you looser and less sore.

For me I found that when I was doing the 6 day a week spilt for Big Beyond Belief I always felt tired, ratty and irritable and got sick really frequently.

But now I have switched to 4 or 5 day volume style split I seem to feel much better and get sick less frequently. Whether this is down to avoiding failure as much or due to having more rest days I don’t really know…

Yep you should take one, even ronnie coleman had a day off, as does every top powerlifter

Personally i do believe rest needs to be taken just as seriously as any other aspect of training, but having a planned, full day “off” has never worked out for me. Rest hard when you can and when you need to, but 95% of people reading these posts get plenty of time off imo.

The best gains ive ever got in either performance or physique was when i trained every day, and basically slept or ate the rest of the time.

Man, this depends on age and what your’re trying to achieve athletically. At the tender age of 31, my joints would not be the same, even though the muscle recovers quickly, without 3 days off a week. But off for me just means no gym, but walking is ALWAYS fair game.

Personally, I train hard 6 days a week, some of those days being two a days, some of them being neural charge, maybe even just a biceps only sessions - so I get plenty of rest AND plenty of hard training - but I always take one day completely off. That just works well for me.

That day off will still consist of house chores and playing with the dog, but that’s pretty much it.

“I’m pretty sure there’s a lot more to life than being really, really, ridiculously good looking. And I plan on finding out what that is.”
~ Derek Zoolander

Sunday is for golf.

ah thanks for the opinions, my personal conclusion on this topic is that no rest days can work for a couple of weeks, it did for me when i was doing pull,push,legs,cardio but then it catches up to you and i needed 8 rest days to get rid of the lack of energy, depression, muscle weakness, etc.

so my plan going forward is to drop cardio and do a upper lower program.

currently conflicted between having 3 or 2 rest days a week, don’t want to shoot myself in the foot by having to few rest days. so its either, lower,upper,rest,lower,rest,upper,rest or just lower,upper,rest,repeat

it seems like the difference would be negligible but in the long run those extra sessions adds up.