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Taking Formal Recovery Weeks: Please Explain Rationale

Discussion in 'Introductions & Advice For Beginners' started by TTU, Sep 8, 2008.

  1. TTU

    TTU Active Member

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    Can anyone shed some light on the concept of formal recovery weeks from hard core training.

    I've been told by several people that it is important to take regular recovery weeks off from formal training.

    Here are my questions:

    1) How often do you all take formal recovery weeks off from training? Every 6-8 weeks maybe?

    2) During this "Recovery Week", what do you do? I mean, do you take a week off from all exercise and activities, or do you still engage in sports, light machine work, cardio, biking or the like?

    3) Why is it important to take recovery weeks?


    Thanks all, :tucool:

    ttu
     
  2. RTE

    RTE Well-Known Member

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    Every 10 weeks, I agree with others, a break from training is due. You just get out of gym as a vacation of sorts, You don't have to lay in bed. You just give your body and its systems a little rest from pushing yourself. When you start back you make more gains.
     
  3. zenpharaohs

    zenpharaohs Elite Member
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    1. I do it about every 12 weeks. I just did one.

    2. I took off from all workouts and I didn't do much other physical activity. If you're in good shape it doesn't really matter if you do light stuff on the recovery week.

    3. It's mainly important for a connective tissue point of view. Your muscles and nerves get hit hard by heavy workouts, but they recover pretty quickly. Your ligaments and tendons get hit just as hard, but they don't recover quickly. So if you want to avoid injury, you need to deload from time to time to give your joints a break.
     
  4. fattytuna

    fattytuna Active Member

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    hehe i'm currently on a week long break. but it wasn't with the intention of having a formal recovery break. i think i just got complacent when i weighed myself and saw i lost 10 lbs. this kind of break is good psychologically and i do take them every few months. it keeps me sane. sometimes though i break for too long and feel guilty about not starting up quickly enough.
     
  5. bradh

    bradh Well-Known Member

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    Deloading comes more important the more weight you use. Right now i wouldn't worry a whole lot about it.

    A deload to me would not mean no training just reduce the loads and/or volume. Every 5-6 weeks probably.

    A complete week off could be done 2-4x per year.
     
  6. Porter_

    Porter_ Active Member

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    last week was my recovery week. i took it after 10 weeks of intense lifting so i was due. yesterday was my first week back and i set a new personal record for flat bench and weighted dips. that's all i need to be sold on the idea of recovery weeks.

    i have to give thanks to rtestes as i got the idea from reading one of his posts. before that i just figured you would lose progress by taking a week off.
     
  7. TTU

    TTU Active Member

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    How often do you take a recovery week?
     
  8. Porter_

    Porter_ Active Member

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    that was the first one i've ever taken. it was after 10 weeks of training, so i'll continue with that cycle and see how it goes. 10 weeks on, 1 week recovery.
     
  9. Hockey4

    Hockey4 Active Member

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    I lift hard and heavy for six weeks. Then I take a deload week, where the weight comes down and the reps go up. Then I hit the iron hard and heavy for six weeks. Then I take a week where I sit around a lot. Eat a lot. And maybe go for a walk if I feel like doing something. Then I start the cycle all over again.

    For me, I think taking a week off lets my CNS recover, and it helps get me hungry. I feel like a caged animal during that week, so when I finally get back to the iron, I'm more motivated and driven.

    Rest weeks are absolutely necessary and have been an integral part of my training. They've helped me bust through all sorts of plateaus.
     
  10. TTU

    TTU Active Member

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    Is it OK during the formal recovery week to:

    1) Perform Cardio?

    2) If so, what type? High-Intensity, Low intensity? Can I still do things such as the elliptical, treadmill, jump rope, stair master, for say maybe 20-30 minutes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday?

    I just feel bad sitting around doing nothing. To me, it would seem that resting the muscle from "resistance" exercise is what is important here.

    Any thoughts?
     
  11. anoopbal

    anoopbal Active Member

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    I would say too much cardio can deplete the glycogen and mess up the whole recovery week. Low intensity cardio wuld be fine.
     

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