For Christians who workout, the term “rest day” probably brings to mind two different things. The first is the Sabbath, the day of rest. This is one day that you set aside each week to regroup and refocus. The second meaning is a day of rest from your normal workout routine. You may do a lighter workout, or none at all. Personally, I prefer to make these two the same day. I like to take one day a week in which I do nothing but focus on God and spend time with my family. On that day, I don’t workout, I don’t go to work or do study for classes. God modeled a day of rest for us in Genesis. This does not mean that no work of any sort should be done. There are still needy on our rest days. My daughter doesn’t cease using the bathroom just so we don’t have to change diapers on our rest day. God’s intention was not a day of no responsibility, it was a day of rest. Check out Luke 14:1-6
“One Sabbath, when he went to dine at the house of a ruler of the Pharisees, they were watching him carefully. And behold, there was a man before him who had dropsy. And Jesus responded to the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath, or not?” But they remained silent. Then he took him and healed him and sent him away. And he said to them, “Which of you, having a son or an ox that has fallen into a well on a Sabbath day, will not immediately pull him out?” And they could not reply to these things.”
This passage clearly shows that the Sabbath is not meant to be an excuse. It is meant to be restful. Here is a list of some of the things I like to do on my rest day, just as an example. Some of them sound strange, but I guess I am kind of a strange person.
1. Do everything more slowly: My week is super rushed. Sometimes it feels like a blur from the time I wake up on Monday morning to the time I get off work Friday evening. I spend much of Saturday doing homework and projects around the house, so I still haven’t totally slowed down. On Sunday, I take my time on things, It takes me forever to eat my food. I brush every single part of every tooth. I just take time to enjoy little things.
2. I try to totally live in the moment. I try to take extra time to hold my wife and chase my daughter through the house. If there is something I have to do, I put a podcast I want to listen to in and just take my time with the task.
3. I stretch. This is one I am just now beginning to incorporate. I don’t workout on Sunday, but I am going to start stretching and foam rolling to help my muscles recover and prepare for another week of lifting.
My intention with this post is to try and encourage you to take a rest day and to think about the best ways to use it. I hope it helps!