The Scary Truth About How Fast You Lose Your Fitness When You Take A Break From Working Out

Some weeks waking up at the crack of dawn and heading to the gym is like second nature, you hardly notice you are doing it and reap the benefits all day long. Other days, when your alarm goes off you snooze it about 10 times, until it is finally too late to make it to the gym and you enjoy your lazy morning sleeping in. One morning sleep in wasn’t enough, and three mornings you find yourself still sleeping in and enjoying this whole no gym thing. A week rolls by, you’ve been getting a lot more sleep but you are starting to feel a little sluggish, but getting back to the gym is hard.

This week off doesn’t really matter, does it?

Within just one week of stopping your regular workout regime, you will start to notice changes in your cardiovascular fitness. According to coach Pete Magill,  author of Build Your Running Body: A Total-Body Fitness Plan for All Distance Runners, from Milers to Ultramarathoners—Run Farther, Faster, and Injury-Free we can lose up to 50% of our fitness gains in this time. Ouch.

Thankfully losing your strength takes a little longer, about two weeks  Dr Hameed told Health. I can definitely relate to this, after just a few weeks of not doing my regular arm programme I definitely noticed my arms were a little weaker and after a month of not going to the gym (I know, I know) I felt as though I was pretty much starting from scratch.

Before you think that you will just enjoy two weeks off and then gain it back in two weeks, think again. It will take you longer to get back to where you started.

So, what can you do? It is the summer holidays, you are away from the gym and to be frank, you can’t be bothered getting up from your sun lounger to get drenched in sweat. Here are a few easier alternatives...that sadly do still include getting up and getting sweaty.

Otherwise, try and at least keep active. Late night walks, swim a few laps, kayak, hike! Enjoy the summer! At the end of the day, most of us accept that over the silly season we are going to ‘fall of the wagon’, or at least slip a little bit. Just remember to keep healthy, after all that’s what its all about not just looking good in a bikini.  Drink tones of water, splash some lemon in it in the morning and have some peppermint tea to help with digestion.