We can’t possibly workout everyday and nor should we want to, but there’s a fine line between giving it to the voice in your head that would rather chill and taking days off only when you really need the rest. If you have fitness goals you have to make it to the gym most of the time. Here are some things to consider when you feel like skipping a workout.

Is Your Body Fatigued

If you feel like skipping a workout because you can hardly move and all your joints are aching, yeah maybe consider if you’ve pushing a little too hard and are actually due for a day off. We can’t go full out every day of the week otherwise we can exhaust ourselves and increase the chances of getting an injury.

Without rest days we don’t have the chance to repair the muscles we’re tearing while lifting weights, which is the process that it needs to go through to actually build muscle. Working out too much not only fatigues the ligaments and muscles but it also puts some added stress on the immune system and can increase stress and inflammation in the body. Those are some pretty good reasons to take it easy when you’re due for it.

If You’re Going to Feel Guilty About Skipping

Unless your body truly needs a day off you might want to consider whether you will feel guilty for skipping the gym or not. Or if you’re going to a birthday party instead of the gym you probably won’t feel bad about the decision, but if you’re just heading home to relax you might. It’s just something to consider about which option will really cause the least pain, and then go with that one.

Most of the time when we commit to going to the gym for even a few minutes we don’t regret the decision. Generally we end up staying longer than first promised that we would and even if we only stay a few minutes it still feels good to raise the heartrate.

Is it Emotional

Sometimes when we feel like skipping the gym it’s because we’re in a bad mood. This is good to notice however, because working out can be a really great way to lift the spirits. (Or just straight up work out some anxiety through catharsis.) Even modest amounts of exercise have been shown to have a positive impact on depression, anxiety, and ADHD, as well as¬†relieve stress, improve memory, help you sleep better, and boost overall mood. Some studies have shown that exercise can treat mild to moderate depression just as good as antidepressants can in some cases.

Working out causes the brain to grow new neurons, and it also makes the body produce endorphins. Endorphins can act like natural painkillers in the body. Some researchers also think that working out increases the neurotransmitter¬†norepinephrine, which plays a role in the moods. So if you want to skip the gym because you’re feeling annoyed or bummed out, you should actually head there immediately.