Take a Break from Fitness with Massage Therapy, MASSAGE MagazineWhether it is a new year, the nearing of the holiday season or an upcoming special event, there seem to be a variety of reasons people pursue fitness in order to achieve certain goals. Among the common fitness goals are the desire to lose weight, feel better both inside and out, and improve one’s overall health.

These fitness achievements are all wonderful and worthy goals, but before you go out and become a fitness fanatic, it is important to stop and consider the best ways to approach your fitness pursuits so that you not only achieve but also maintain your goals. This means taking the time to figure out the best form of fitness for both your mental and physical health, and how you will weave your new fitness routine—and rest periods—into your current schedule.

You may find it odd to be considering rest periods before you have even begun your new fitness pursuits, but rest periods are actually crucial components of overall fitness. Without time to heal and recharge, your body can be more prone to overuse injuries and other unwanted issues. Even if you do not suffer an injury from a lack of rest time between workouts, your performance may slide downhill if your body is not really being given the chance to heal and recharge.

So, as you begin to build fitness into your life, you can begin to think about how you will also weave in the best-possible methods for healing and resting your body. For ideas, we can turn our attention to amateur and professional athletes, and look to see their favored ways for recharging between fitness pursuits. What we find when we hone in on this population is that massage therapy stands out as a top choice in terms of balancing out intense and consistent physical activity.

One of the reasons massage therapy can be such a great way to recharge and heal is because massage is often used specifically to help alleviate aches and pains in the muscles and joints, which means a speedier recovery from the kind of soreness that can make it tough to perform in one’s fitness pursuits. Massage therapy also is reported to improve circulation and help flush the body of toxins.

Of course, even without massage therapy, most bodies will eventually recover from aches and pains and also expel toxins. However, when you are constantly engaged in fitness activities, your body may not get the chance to fully recover. Fortunately, massage therapy can hit fast forward on the whole process, allowing you to use your rest days to truly recharge and be ready to get back into your fitness routine.

Whether you choose to lift weights three days a week, run four days a week, take classes most days in aerobics and resistance training, or create some other fitness schedule entirely, do not forget to build rest periods into your schedule and incorporate massage during these rest periods.