Hopefully, my readers belong to the committed few who haven’t strayed away from your New Years Health & Fitness resolutions and continue to make exercise an integral part of the Sacred Lifestyle. The benefits of exercise are well documented throughout medical journals and the general media. So, I will not bore you with my rant on “why exercise.” If you are reading this blog, I assume, you are already convinced and can skip the lecture.
Let’s get straight to the meat of the matter. To get the benefits of exercise it is necessary that you do it consistently. I have found that one of the obstacles to being consistent about exercising is injuries incurred while working out. Sometimes we are so gung-ho about getting in shape, that we leap into exercising head first. Although this is great as a motivator, it can lead to unnecessary injuries that can side line you for days, weeks or even months.
A few common practices that may lead to exercise related injury are: Using improper form while executing movements. Pushing yourself too hard or lifting too much weight is another common way people hurt themselves while training. The one I would like to offer some assistance with today is injury due to lack of properly warming up before going hard in the gym.
Warming up your body is essential to preventing injury to yourself while you are exercising. Here are a few reasons why you want to warm up:
- a warmed muscle both contracts more forcefully and relaxes more quickly.
- improves muscle elasticity, also reducing the risk of strains and pulls.
- reduces the resistance to blood flow and lower stress on the heart.
- increased Blood Temperature means a slightly greater volume of oxygen is made available to the working muscles, enhancing endurance and performance.
- the range of motion around a joint is increased.
- the warm-up is also a good time to mentally prepare for an event by clearing the mind, increasing focus, reviewing skills and strategy.
In essence, warming up not only helps to prevent injury, it enhances performance and allows you to get the most benefit from your exercise routine.
Here is a video of me demonstrating some dynamic warm up movements developed by fitness professional Loren Landaw.
If you have not been warming up before your workout, try this routine. I am interested in hearing how this warm up effects your workout routine in general. So leave me a post after you have tried it for a week or so.
Kazi- CPT, CMT
PS. Free Pre-Boot Camp begins April 20