Active Recovery Day Questions & Answers

Something most of us don’t think about is recovery day.  Most people jump into a program focused on the training they are going to do.  Even when they have trainers they believe rest days are optional.  Let me show you exactly why adding an active recovery day is beneficial for you.  I’ll also show you some examples of the best activities to do.

What is a recovery day?

A recovery day is one of the 6 components of our training program.  This component is very important because it allows your body to restore homeostasis.  Simply put, your muscles including your heart are regenerating and restoring.

active recovery day activity hiking

What is active recovery?

Active recovery is where you take a day off training.  On this ‘off’ day, you will still be active but won’t stress out your body as much.  This can include some activities like stretching or walking.  See below for a list of other activities you can do.


I know it sounds pointless because you might be active during the week anyway.  Whether you are chasing kids around or moving a lot at work, you still need this.  If this is the case, then adding stretches and SMR will be better for you.

overtraining can lead to injuries

Is it bad to work out every day?

Well, I’m not going to say that it’s bad.  But I will say that this opens you up to injuries and overtraining.  The ideal fitness program should include cardio, resistance, and active recovery.  Most people break it up into days.  This gives your body time to regenerate and stay active throughout the week.


The best thing you can do is have a personalized workout plan that will break down exactly what YOU need.  You can get one from us!

SMR on your active recovery day

Best active recovery day activities to do

Here are some ideas for you to consider. Everyone is different and everyone has different tastes.  The bottom line is, for a successful active recovery day, just move or stretch!


-Light Resistance Training

-Core exercises

-Self Myofascial Release (SMR)

-Walking or running (not HIIT) steady


-Cycling (steady)

allow your body to recover

How many active recovery days do I need per week?

This truly depends on your program.  If you don’t follow a program, try to do 2 to 3 days.  Generally, our clients’ workouts include an active rest day every other day.  They choose a few activities that they enjoy and do them.  Again, this truly depends on your lifestyle, fitness goals, and fitness level.


Our corrective exercise clients use this time to continue correcting their posture through SMR.  If you choose SMR as your active recovery day, you should add a walk to that.


Active recovery day ideas


That said, active rest days are pretty simple don’t you think?  The hard part for some of us is incorporating them into our routine.  We may think that we can skip a rest day because it’s not as important as training. 


Stay tuned because there will be a part 2 on this topic later.  Send me your questions!

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Online personal trainer and personal trainer for Austin TX - Rafael Ortiz

Rafael Ortiz

Corrective Exercise Specialist

Rafael has been in the health and fitness industry since 2006.  He is certified by the NASM & insured.

Areas of Expertise

Joint Pain Relief, Post-Rehab Personal Training, Posture Correction, Weight Loss, Nutrition, Strength Training, Core and Balance, Flexibility and Mobility, Muscle Gain, Posture, TRX, Functional Training, Myofascial Release, Cardiovascular Conditioning, Injury Prevention, Stress Reduction, Corrective Exercise, Golf