Updated: Feb 21, 2019
I often get asked (in somewhat guilty tones sometimes) about whether it is a good idea during the summer to take time out from the gym.
To which I always say ‘Yes!’
Gym culture can be a strange thing sometimes. With its characteristics of goal-setting or weight taking and its constant pushing, pushing, pushing to greater strength and fitness it can at times take on the appearance of a workout prison.
Or at least a kind of exercise community service.
Now, don’t get me wrong, as I believe that goals, targets and focus are all good things. When managed effectively and balanced sensibly with the other responsibilities in our lives they can also have a positive role to play in building a sustainable workout programme.
The problem is that if a fitness regime starts to get out of control it can become both unhelpful and (dare I say it) boring. And when it reaches that point we all know how it feels; punishing, exhausting and miserable.
Or, to put it in other words, it can get to be fatiguing.
Which is why the summer season can be so helpful for recharging the batteries and stimulating the brain with new sights, sounds and experiences. Plus there can also be the added bonus of sunning or showing off the body that has been honed over the preceding months in the gym whilst taking a break from dietary rigour.
I tend to find that when I take a break and return to the gym I do so with renewed attack and vigour. The mountain is then ready to be climbed with a fresh sense of optimism and energy, whilst the gym itself can take on a new (or at least a refreshed) appearance.
Training in the gym can of course drag you down, as is not an apparently natural thing to do. It is not natural for human