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Why Trainers and Elite Athletes Are All About the #RestDayBrags

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We do a lot of things for the Insta. We show off our latest workout with a sweaty selfie. We humblebrag our newest race day bling. We pride ourselves in #NoDaysOff and celebrate other badasses who grin and bear the pain and gut their way through a workout or race.

What we don't do? Boast about our epic rest days. Until now, that is.

Earlier this year, Amelia Boone, an ultrarunner and World's Toughest Mudder Champion, tweeted to her 18,000+ followers, "People don't brag about rest days like they do their 'epic' runs, but they should."

She should know. Boone was at the top of the Obstacle Course Racing (OCR) world when she suffered two stress fractures (in her femur and sacrum). She's spent the better part of the past year rehabbing, recovering, and preparing for her comeback to elite racing. She's also been getting comfortable with rest—lots of rest.

At first, the break was tough. After all, active people struggle with taking time off. Plus, there's a pressure to keep up with the Joneses on social media by one-upping the latest athletic feat.

But the injuries led Boone to team up with Olympic swimmer Caroline Burckle and runner Jonathan Levitt to #MakeRestGreatAgain. In February, they started a Rest Day Brags account on Twitter and Instagram.

Think of it as a community and group therapy session for those of us who struggle with taking a day off, where it's okay to drop the ego and say, "I'm tired. I took a nap instead of working out." And they're talking about complete and total rest (not active recovery)—think: hanging around outside or on your couch, slipping on a pair of compression sleeves, and enjoying good food and drink. The group of athletes is hoping to change the conversation around the idea that more is always better.

And they're right. Regularly scheduled rest days are a key part of training. Without proper rest, you run the risk of injury, burnout, and exhaustion, as we reported in 9 Reasons to Skip Your Workout. Plus, your muscles need rest in order to repair microdamage and grow stronger.

Ready to brag about your epic rest day? Join the conversation on Twitter and Instagram by following #restdaybrags, #epicrestdays, #LemmeSeeYaLazy and #MakeRestGreatAgain. Now go rest!

 

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