Why We All Need a Break from Dieting & Fitness

As I talked about in a recent post, lately I feel like I’ve been fighting a losing battle with dieting and fitness. I’ve been on some sort of ‘diet’ or ‘cut’ for nine months while also following an intense gym routine on the side. I love eating well and I love working out, those things won’t change, but I think there comes a time when you just need a break, whether you feel you deserve one or not.

I don’t think you necessarily need to take months out, unless you have to, because that will no doubt undo some of the progress that you’ve spent God knows how long making ― but it is perfectly ok to take a week or even two weeks to relax, give your body a break, and reassess your goals. It’s up to you when you take a break and how long you rest for, but I really believe you should just listen to your body. If you’re tired and lacking motivation, maybe you need a break. If you’re not seeing results, maybe you need a break. If you find you’re stressed and it’s affecting things like work or your social life, then maybe you need a break. We can’t all be on top of our game all of the time.

If the thought of taking time out makes you feel guilty, then I can relate. I hit a rough patch before Easter and probably should have taken a break then, but instead I pushed through and continued my already six-month-long stint, right the way up until two weeks ago before I set off on holiday, totaling nine months of solid dedication to exercise and a good eating plan. By the time I got on the plane to Mexico, I’d never been more ready for a break. There were other reasons as to why I felt I needed to get away which I’ll talk about in a later post, but I strongly believe that my ‘body overhaul project’ took its toll on me ― big time. And I’m not just talking about the physical efforts either, I’m talking about every little thing right down to spending a good few hours a week reading posts about fitness, watching fitness video after fitness video, and researching ‘how to get leaner’ until I couldn’t possibly Google anything more.

As this post goes live I’ll be landing back in the UK after a twelve day trip to Mexico. During this time I will have completely let my hair down, with minimal training and a diet which, well, it’s all inclusive so I think that says it all really. Will I have gained weight? Absolutely. And will I have lost any definition that I had when I left Gatwick? Of course! But that’s ok, because I needed that break, and if you can’t relax on holiday, when can you? I hold my hands up and say that I over did it, but when you’re in that moment, panicking over the state of your ‘bikini body’, it’s impossible to realise just how absorbed you’ve become. 

Seriously, give yourself time to recover and kick-start your passion for fitness and food again. Even the best of the best take time out. We’re not machines, we need to recharge just the same as our phones, laptops and camera batteries do. 

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