Have you noticed how society has sort of led us to believe that more is always better? The more money you have, the better. The more friends you have, the better. The more degrees and certifications you have, the better. The more weight you can lift, the better. None of that is necessarily true, though. The truth is, more isn’t always best when it comes to our health and well-being. If eating healthy and exercising more was all it took to reach optimal health, then why do so many people tend to spin their wheels in place and never reach their goals?
By no means am I telling you that you need to eat less healthy foods or be less active, but I am saying that whenever you push your body to the limits, there is only so much it can take. Something is going to have to give before you keep pushing it and eventually do more harm than good.
Before we dive in and discuss why more isn’t actually better, allow me to introduce myself for those of you who are new around here!
My name is Tony Stephan, and I’m a dietitian business coach. I help RDs make more IMPACT and more INCOME through nutrition coaching. However, before I became a dietitian business coach, I was an RD nutrition coach (just like you!). I served thousands of nutrition coaching clients over a time span of 12 years. My successful nutrition coaching business is what led me to where I am today. Now, let’s discuss the importance of rest and recovery and why more actually isn’t better for us when it comes to our health!
More Physical Activity Isn’t Always Best
If you worked out everyday and multiple times per day, I am sure you’d see some results at first. But, deep down, our bodies would be begging us to stop. This might feel like being highly stressed or anxious, especially on days where you can’t get in a workout. This might also feel like constant fatigue and exhaustion. Over time, whatever results you produced by excessively working out would eventually fade. You’d probably develop an injury or get frequently ill. Your mental health and overall well-being would likely suffer as well.
Recovery Is Key
It’s important to remember that in order for your body to reach optimal health, recovery is key. There is a fine line between overtraining and getting adequate rest and recovery. While overtraining and pumping out reps until failure may have its benefits, the amount of time we spend in that phase can impact how our bodies recover. Another way of putting it is your workouts are only as good as your recovery. One is essentially irrelevant without the other. You can only train as hard as your body recovers.
A rest and recovery day doesn’t mean being totally sedentary or laying around the house watching Netflix all day. Recovery days can include less intense forms of activity such as yoga, walks or jogs, and leisurely swimming or biking. Active rest can actually better support your long-term goals by supporting your body’s ability to keep joints, muscles, and connective tissues in great shape. This is great for sustainability and longevity!
Other ways to support your recovery aside from physical activity may include additional forms of self-care and stress-reduction techniques such as reading a book, meditating, journaling, or simply spending time with friends and family. Last but not least, make sure you’re getting at least 7 hours of quality sleep per night!
More Dietary Restriction Isn’t Always Best (Unless It’s Medically Necessary)
The more restrictive your diet is, the less likely you will be able to sustain that for long periods of time. Furthermore, the more restrictive you are with your diet, the more likely you are to underfuel. This is dangerous because it increases your risk for injury and illness!
If you’re an online nutrition coach, you know this well. On the other hand if you’re just trying to take better care of yourself, I would highly recommend working with a dietitian nutrition coach you know, like, and trust to ensure you’re properly fueling your body to support optimal recovery and performance!
The Takeaway On Why More Isn’t Always Best
When it comes to working out for your health, more isn’t always best. Rest days and time away from the gym is just as important as active days and time spent in the gym. Keep in mind that in order for your next session to be as good as you hope, the rest and recovery you provide for yourself matters a ton. You’ll also want to prioritize sleep and ensure you are properly fueling.
Do you have follow up questions about why more necessarily isn’t always best? Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know. Seriously, I want to hear from you!
If you are a dietitian looking to start your own nutrition coaching business, you are in the right place. I’m proud to be a part of the movement of dietitian entrepreneurs who are making more IMPACT and more INCOME! Check out some of our FREE resources below.