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When to Skip a Workout

When to Skip a Workout

It’s important to listen to your body and know when to skip a workout. Here are some signs that it might be time to take a day off:

  • You’re feeling sick or run down.
  • You’re feeling overly tired or fatigued.
  • You’re feeling pain or soreness that’s not going away.
  • You’re not feeling motivated or excited about your workout – Remember the 10-minute rule*

If you’re experiencing any of these signs, it’s best to skip your workout and listen to your body. Skipping a workout now will help you avoid getting injured or sick later on.

There are a few things you can do on your rest day to still stay active and improve your fitness. You could go for a walk, do some light stretching, or use a foam roller. You could also use your rest day to catch up on sleep, hydrate, or eat healthy foods.

Taking a rest day is not a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of wisdom and self-care. So next time you’re feeling like you should skip a workout, listen to your body and do what’s best for you.

When skipping a workout day you can consider the following too.

  • Consider your training goals. If you’re training for a specific event, you may need to be more strict about sticking to your schedule. However, if you’re just trying to get into general fitness, it’s okay to take a day off here and there.
  • Pay attention to your recovery. If you’re not feeling recovered from your last workout, it’s probably a good idea to skip the next one or rearrange your training session.
  • Listen to your body. If you’re feeling tired, sore, or just not up to it, don’t force yourself to work out.

Remember, taking a rest day is not a bad thing. It’s actually an important part of a healthy training plan. So next time you’re feeling like you should skip a workout, listen to your body and do what’s best for you.


The next time you don’t want to have a workout… it’s raining outside, you really can’t be bothered, it’s been a long day at work, the kids are doing your head in and you’d rather have a glass of wine, then try the 10-minute rule.

Put your gym kit and trainers on (this is the hardest part, once you’ve done this then it’s plain sailing from here).

  1. Start your workout, by telling yourself you are only going to workout for 10 minutes. If after 10 minutes, you’re still tired, you can’t be bothered, you still have a headache, etc then STOP. Give yourself the day off, sometimes it’s important to listen to your body.
  2. If after 10 minutes, you feel GREAT, you no longer feel tired, and those pesky endorphins are running around your body making you feel AMAZING, like you can do ANYTHING in the world then continue!

I can guarantee that 9 times out of 10 you’ll go for option 2 and carry on with your workout, wondering why you ever made such a fuss about not wanting to work out.

The 10-minute rule is simple but effective, give it a whirl the next time you are trying to avoid a workout!

Stuart has competed in triathlons from Sprint to Ironman distance. As a qualified Triathlon Australia, Australian Athletics Run Coach, and a certified Ironman coach, he is aware of the importance of balancing training with lifestyle, thus complementing other important aspects of an athlete’s life (family, work, study commitments, etc.).

Contact Stuart at



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