It’s the final week of Fitness Flipped! In these episodes, Tunde touches on a topic she herself preaches about, yet doesn’t always follow: taking the time to rest. In today’s world of hustle culture, rest is often pushed to the back burner. Yet to be the best version of yourself—on and off your Peloton Bike and Peloton Tread—you need to give your body rest.
Tunde chats with Pooja Lakshmin, MD, a board-certified psychiatrist, Founder and CEO of Gemma and member of Peloton’s Health & Wellness Advisory Council on why rest is essential and how it benefits your brain and body. Then, Desus Nice, TV personality, podcast host and New York Times bestselling author of God-Level Knowledge Darts: Life Lessons From the Bronx, explains his unique perspective on rest.
Remember to Be a Human Being, not Just a Human Doing
“Like everybody else, I spend so much of my day running from task to task, getting things done, and taking care of people in my life,” says Dr. Lakshmin. “For me, rest is what happens when I disconnect from that productivity and performance mindset.” This means that rest is just as much physical as it is mental. “When you're just letting yourself pause, take space, and just be— that’s rest,” Dr. Lakshmin says.
Rest can improve your brain health too, according to Dr. Lakshmin. Taking time to rest taps into the centers of your brain responsible for feelings and emotions. “Research supports that people who have access to this part of the brain are able to develop authentic relationships with themselves and with others,” she says. “Overall, they live happier lives.”
Reframe Rest as Resistance
Instead of thinking of rest as something that’s passive, think of it as action. “Rest can and should be something you're doing to take your power back, your energy back, and to reclaim your attention from the oppressive systems that we live inside of—whether that's capitalism, racism, patriarchy, or something else,” says Dr. Lakshmin.
Understanding when you need rest doesn’t mean you’re weak. Instead, it’s a sign of strength that you’re able to listen to your needs and then meet them regardless of what’s happening in the external world around you.
Rise and Grind Culture Isn’t Always Realistic
People may brag on social media about working nonstop or exercising intensely everyday, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do. “You have to really look at the big picture when it comes to the grind culture, it's called grind for a reason,” says Nice. “It's like when you make coffee, you grind down the beans, but there are no beans left when you're done. You have to look at it in perspective.”
Nice tells Tunde how his idea of rest has changed from lounging on the couch to logging on to the Peloton App for some yoga instead. “For me, it’s about reducing my anxiety and helping me relax so that I’m not always in survival mode,” he says.
Listen to the full episode for the rest of Tunde and Nice’s talk, including how the idea of rest was difficult to accept when they were growing up as children of hardworking immigrant parents. Then, take part in the weekly challenge—it may just be the most difficult one yet. Schedule a time to rest, whether it’s 10 minutes or an hour. Tag @tunde2tunde and @OnePeloton and use #FitnessFlipped to share how it went.