Take a Break!

Whatever you are working on to improve, there will be days when it is the very last thing you want to do. It doesn’t matter if you are training for a marathon or a spelling bee.  So what to do?

You can always give yourself permission to duff. I do this with some of my workouts. On some days, I burn straight through these drills and the sweat feels great. Other days, not so much. So, I slow down. What they hey – I’m not training for the Olympics. And doing something is almost always better than doing nothing.

Or you can take a break for a day. Or a few days. Sometimes, a couple of days off helps you return with a vigor and enthusiasm that you had forgotten. Be careful, though. The key to improvement is mindful, incremental plodding toward a goal. There is a fine line – you will have to decide where it lays – between a rejuvenating break and giving up.

A story:

I get so tired of running in the summer heat of the Carolinas and long for the days of the Northwest where a glorious summer day starts out at 55 degrees and creeps toward 72. Here in the South, we start at 92 and inch toward 105. It’s pretty brutal for this old man. So, a few years ago, I decided to take a month off between the middle of August and the middle of September. It was nice. I did yoga in my air conditioned house four days a week. When I started running again I was worried that I had lost any gains I had made in the Spring. It didn’t happen that way. I went out for a three mile run and turned in by best time. I felt great. I felt good all the time after that and was measurably faster.

So take a break and do something out of your box. It might just be what your body and brain are looking for.


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