A Rest Day Doesn't Have to Mean Doing Nothing

If you're following our Get Fit For 2014 workout calendar, congrats on finishing your first week! To soothe sore, tired muscles, stretch for 20 minutes on your rest day — today! While it's true that a rest day can be just as good for you as a workout (just make sure it doesn't turn into a rest week), "resting" doesn't always have to mean lying on the couch. Stay active — and burn a few calories — on your rest day with these two ways to stay active without overexerting yourself.

Thinkstock | Fuse

Opt for stretching: A low-intensity workout that involves stretching instead of sweating is the perfect way to make sure you're still moving your body without going overboard. Even if you're only watching TV, keep your joints flexible and soothe sore muscles with stretches. If you have a foam roller, don't forget to spend time rolling out your knots as well. Here are five stretching sequences we recommend:

Light cardio: A few minutes of cardio is always good for you — all it takes is 20 minutes! A brisk walk, a short hike, a few laps at the pool, or a leisurely bike ride will energize you without making you feel like to need to go through the whole snack-exercise-shower routine. And since staying sedentary can do more harm than good, opt for something active if you're left wondering what to do on a recovery day.