In fact, it’s a good idea. Backing off the intensity mitigates fatigue and helps prevent burnout and injury.
Last week I was beaten down. I was getting over a cold and I was tired and lethargic. I wanted to work out, but I just couldn’t get the engines firing for our 8:00AM workouts. On Thursday, I expressed how I felt to Peter who suggested I do the WOD at an easy pace instead of backing out of it entirely. An easy pace; what the hell is that!
I took his advice and turned down the intensity a bit. Not surprisingly, Peter was right. I got in a good workout and, afterwards, I felt fresher than I had in days. I also went to yoga later that day, which I highly recommend any time, but especially when you feel your body needs a break from high intensity workouts.This combination was exactly what I needed to stay in the gym without burning out or injuring myself.
Now, for you sandbaggers out there looking for an easy out, I’m not saying don’t push yourself and go through the motions; this is not an invitation to be mediocre. I’m saying pay attention to when your body needs a break and dial it down for a minute. Think of it as active rest and come back fresh the next time you hit the gym.
What’s your approach when you feel burnt out or fatigued?