Rest vs Active Recovery
If you are newer to CrossFit you may be wondering how many rest days/week you need and is that the same as active recovery? There is no exact answer to the first part, but nobody should be in the gym 7 days a week, and 6 days is even pushing it. You ultimately need to listen to your body and take your baseline fitness level into consideration as well. Work, family obligations, other interests, and life in general may get in the way of your ideal plan, so be flexible and know that one week may not always mirror the next. When you do take a day off from CrossFit, your options are complete rest or some form of active recovery.
Box Magazine does a great job describing the difference between the two. Rest is generally categorized as sleep and time spent not training or exercising. Active recovery (AR) focuses on completing an exercise at a low intensity, but high enough to increase blood flow and enhance the clearance of enzymes responsible for muscle damage and residual fatigue (we typically program this type of activity on Thursdays at Bainbridge Island CrossFit). Both are valuable and should not be overlooked. Even if CrossFit is your chosen sport, too much of anything is not a good thing. As Greg Glassman says, “Regularly learn and play new sports.” Get outside, try new things and use your fitness!