Working Out in Jakarta: 5 Times You Are Excused from It

Working out in our busy city is a great way to stay fit and healthy. But there are five times when it is okay to skip our workout.

The general belief is that your best efforts will bring out the best results in your workout. However, just like a sports car, you should not be driving it at full speed at the time; sometimes you just want to take it for a relaxing drive instead.

In the same way, this is how you should treat your body—you need to know when it is ok to let it rest for the day. Forcing yourself to workout when you should not can actually do more harm than good to your body. So you need to understand what your body is communicating to you by recognising the signals it is sending out. To help you out, we highlight five times when you most definitely should take a break from your daily fitness routine.

If you are asking whether you should continue with your favourite cardio exercise or to head home and rest when you are sick, the answer is the latter. Some friends may tell you that you can fight your sickness with moderate exercise, but according to Dr Ross Tucker, it is better to rest your body whenever you see any symptoms. Being sick adds stress to your body, and exercising when sick will prolong the recovery period. Rest gives your body the chance to fight the bug. I learned this the hard way—I continued exercising even when I had cold symptoms, and ended up with one week of bed rest. So please rest when your body tells you so.

When you are mentally tired, it is better to skip your workout. Studies show that people feel exhausted much faster after doing a taxing mental task, and find it harder to get through their exercise routine in such times. Rather than attempt to workout in late in the night after a long day at work, it is better to find a more relaxing time during the weekend instead.

One of the obvious reason when you are allowed to not workout is when you are injured. Straining the injury could make it worse and take you longer to recover. Giving yourself time out to recover is the wisest choice. If your body is itching for a workout, then tone down the intensity and switch to alternatives such as yoga or Pilates. More importantly, always seek professional advice from your doctor to find out what is best for you.


When you have so much in your hands, it is a luxury to have eight hours of peaceful sleep. When you lack sleep, your immune system is compromised and this will affect your mental and physical performance. Sleep is also your body’s only way to recover your metabolism that was disturbed by the sleep deprivation. On such days, go ahead and skip your workout to catch up on your sleep.

It is understandable that after carrying a baby bump for the past nine months, you would like to quickly get back in to your tight jeans and sexy heels. However, do not be too quick to get back to your exercise routine—it is recommended that you wait for at least six weeks after giving birth, and longer if you had a C-section. Before you start working out, get your doctor’s permission. So just relax and enjoy your time with your new baby for now.

Exercise is great but do not get too obsessed with it. You should always remember that our body has its limits, even though exercise is good for you. So it is definitely okay to take a break from exercising when it is needed.



About Shahnaz Soehartono

Shahnaz Soehartono believes that taking good care of yourself by eating healthy and exercising regularly is your way of thanking the universe for the life that was given to you. As a host of the Indonesia Morning Show on Net TV, she is racing against time everyday to broadcast the news as soon as possible. She attains balance and peace in life through yoga, and challenges herself through Pilates. She is now a graduate student in IKJ. She loves reading books and her favourite genre is fiction.

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