Sometimes working out just isn't in the cards. Maybe you've been sick or have an injury. Or maybe your schedule is totally unforgiving and you're overloaded with work and sports.
It happens to everyone. You'd be hard pressed to find a person who has never taken some time off from training. For a few weeks, a break from exercise is not all that problematic. But de-training issues begin to arise if you extend it for too long.
Here's how skipping workouts affects your body for the first four weeks, and for the time thereafter.
In the first four weeks . . .
Your conditioning decreases
You can quickly improve your conditioning. At the same time, your endurance is one of the first things to go after you stop working out. "You see some high level CrossFit guys who can get in great conditioning shape in a couple of weeks," says Dr. John Rusin, a strength coach specializing in sports performance physical therapy and rehab. "You can get linearly better and linearly worse by not doing your specific energy systems work."