The Best Active Rest Days, According to Peloton Members

Catherine Gambrell
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For maximum results, when it comes to indoor cycling, your best strategy is: ride, ride, repeat…right? As it turns out, nope. As any Peloton instructor will tell you, active rest days are essential to prevent injury and improve your fitness. But that doesn’t mean you should indulge your inner couch potato. Engaging in an active rest day can help your body feel good while it recovers. So what’s the best way to hit that sweet spot where moving your body and taking it easy come together? We asked the experts: YOU. Read on to find out what Members like you do when they’re off the Bike or Tread.

Yoga, yoga, and more yoga. The results of a very unscientific poll are in, and the winner is definitely yoga. Whether it’s on Peloton Digital or in their local studio, Members love a good stretch session. Brady McCray likes heated power yoga: “It works out all the storeness and provide a good stretch and a little upper-body workout,” she says. And for Michelle Leilani, there’s an added benefit: “It helps me to unwind after a stressful day at work.”

Walk it out. A classic low-impact workout, walking is a go-to rest-day activity for a whole lot of Members. Some couple it with another activity, like Stacey Kobeszko: “I’ll do an outdoor lunchtime walk and some stretching/foam rolling.” Mimi Deck Rutledge advises, “Take an hour power walk with someone you love or need to catch up with!”

Jump around. Kimbery Emery makes recovery a family affair: “I jump with my kids on our backyard trampoline. My kiddos love it when I join them, and it’s a good workout for me!” Heather Carter-Castleberry gets even more creative: “I do pole fitness at a local gym. The bodyweight resistance is perfect, and it’s fun to watch the 20-somethings’ jaws hit the floor when they realize someone their mom’s age is hanging upside down from a pole.”

Get back to nature. Margery Miller Shanoff loves to garden on her days off. “It’s a lot of core, arm, and hamstring work,” she says, “and it gets me outside.” A lot of Members love to hike, but Alexis Robin takes it to another level and goes “forest bathing.” She extols the mental benefits of the practice, saying “When I’m recovering from a few days of intense Peloton workouts, I love to get outside with a walk or meditation in the forest. It’s the perfect balance to the high-intensity indoor screen-based activity.”

Chill out. It may be counterintuitive, but some Members swear by cold for muscle recovery. “Swim!” says Julie Kaplan. “It’s even better in a cold pool because it has an anti-inflammatory effect. I focus on upper body, still engage the core, and can adjust cardio to suit how I feel.” Jessica Lynn Smith incorporates cryotherapy into her routine — she says hopping into an icy chamber is “great for sore muscles” and adds it to hiking and yoga as part of her recovery program.