Sleep, Rest & Recovery – What’s The Difference?

Sleep, Rest, Recovery - What's The Difference? By Evan LaBarre, CSC Personal Trainer

Within the realm of exercise and fitness these words and ideas get used interchangeably. So let’s take a quick moment to clarify.


While we all know what actual sleep is, to be clear rest and recovery are both occurring while we are sleeping.


Rest is simply not being active or reducing our level of activity. Resting between sets of a strength training
workout would be short term rest, sleeping at night is an example of a nightly rest cycle.


This describes the actual physical anatomical rebuilding and refueling process that take place while at rest and when while sleeping. These are the actual processes by which muscle tissue is repaired and grown, the refueling of energy systems and sources like Glycogen, Creatine Kinase, and Fat. Recovery can also describe the mental recharge that occurs when we take a break from a program after months of hard work.