If there’s one thing we’re all guilty of, it’s skipping out on a warm-up and going straight into our workout. This is one of the biggest workout mistakes you can make, and you’ve likely paid for it the following morning, or even during your workout. It’s not a myth, and a warm-up is one of the most important features of your workout when it comes to safe practice.
Whether you just want to get straight into your workout or get it out the way as soon as possible, skipping your warm-up can be incredibly tempting. Despite this, it’s important to fight the urge and warm up before every single one of your workouts.
They Reduce the Risk of Injury
It’s most commonly preached that warm-ups help you reduce the risk of injury, which could save you from pain, as well as inconvenient medical appointments such as an MSK ultrasound scan. In fact, an injury could inhibit you from continuing with your regular workouts, which only makes it more difficult to get into a comfortable flow.
Warming up improves the elasticity of your muscles and also facilitates efficient cooling. This means that there’s less of a chance that you’ll overheat or injure yourself during your workout, meaning you can continue with your fitness journey.
They Increase Body and Muscle Temperature
An effective warm-up will elevate your body temperature, which your muscles can ultimately benefit from during a workout. As the temperature of your muscles elevates, they’re able to access oxygen with more ease, which facilitates them in relaxing and contracting easily.
This means that you’ll be able to perform more strenuous tasks, and your heart is able to prepare itself, which will inhibit it from becoming strained during the course of your workout.
They Help You Mentally Prepare
It’s very difficult to just jump straight into a workout, not only physically, but also mentally. If you’re not mentally prepared for a workout, you simply won’t perform to the best of your ability, which can only lead to you becoming disheartened.
When your workout starts to get difficult, you’re much more likely to give up, as you haven’t allowed your brain time to establish why you’re doing it. You should use your warming-up time to establish your goals, which will allow for a much more successful workout that you’ll feel proud to have completed.
They Increase Your Flexibility
In addition to a light cardio-fuelled warm-up, you should also set aside at least five minutes to stretch your muscles. This will elevate your blood flow, which will facilitate your body in increasing its flexibility for both short- and long-term purposes. Make sure to stretch after the cardio portion of your warm-up, as stretching muscles that aren’t warm can result in injury. Additionally, you should stretch your muscles at the end of your workout, which is otherwise known as a cool-down. This will allow you to bring your heart rate down gradually and also prevent your joints from stiffening upon your activity coming to a close.
They Prepare You for the Heavy-Duty Machines
Even if you’re not a cardio lover, warming up is also incredibly important when it comes to the use of heavy-duty equipment at the gym. If you haven’t loosened your joints before lifting heavy objects, your muscles will be more prone to straining.
As previously mentioned, it’s not all about getting your body ready, but also your mind, which is vitally important for anyone looking to do some heavy lifting.
Do you make sure to warm up before every workout session? What’s your favorite way to warm up?