Benefits of Warm Up and Cool Down Activities For Exercising
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Benefits of Warm Up and Cool Down Activities For Exercising

Warm up and cool down activities for exercising, this is part 17 in our twenty-part series designed to help you better understand Serious Weight Loss For Women.

Part 1: Mind Body Wellness
Part 2: Secrets to Weight Loss Success
Part 3: High Intensity Interval Training 101
Part 4: Blazing Your Way to Fitness with HIIT
Part 5: Beating the Calories with Wise Dieting
Part 6: The Truth About Crash Diets
Part 7: Shave Off Pounds Without Even Trying
Part 8: Enjoy Healthy Eating…Every Day
Part 9: My Weight Loss Journey
Part 10: Lifestyle and Weight Management
Part 11: Good Health Nutrition
Part 12: Dangers of Sugar
Part 13: Understanding Your Diet
Part 14: Positive Motivation
Part 15: Workout Schedule For Beginners
Part 16: Important Facts About HIIT Training
Part 17: You are here – Warm Up and Cool Down Activities For Exercising

How can you keep yourself safe while working out?

The mere thought of losing excess weight and achieving the body you want is exciting. This is particularly so when your motivation is high. Just be careful when you workout.

The sheer excitement with the prospect of losing weight and reclaiming the body you once had can lead to overexertion and occasionally, incorrect form while exercising. Both can cause injury.  That’s why your need proper warm up and cool down activities for exercising.

Imagine being well on your way to your weight loss goals. But then you sustain an injury.  Not being able to work out is frustrating for anyone who has made exercise part of their life.  If you’re shooting for a major weight loss milestone getting injured and not being able to workout can be a crushing blow. That’s why it’s vitally important to know how to prevent injuries before they relegate you to the sidelines.

In this article, I’m going to share some insights about working out gleaned over the years. My intention is to help you avoid a workout-related injury that can stifle your weight loss progress.

Prevention is better than a cure!

What exactly should you do before you begin to exercise?

Some people think that think that talking to their doctor before launching into a new exercise program is an unnecessary waste of time. But it’s a smart thing to do. And it’s a must for anyone with any kind of chronic condition such as diabetes or high blood pressure.

If your LDL or “bad cholesterol” is high – you could be at greater risk. That’s why it’s a good idea to check with your doctor before beginning any weight loss program. Don’t let your desire to lose weight interfere with dong the right thing. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Let your doctor assess your current physical condition and weigh the risks against the potential gains. Trust your doctor. If he or she doesn’t approve of your chosen diet and/or exercise program, it’s probably to your advantage to avoid it and try something else. Don’t feel bad – be glad instead. Chances are the risk is greater than the potential benefit.

The older we get, the more those risks increase. Folks 44 and older should be monitored closely by doctors when they begin a new exercise routine. That’s due to the increased risk of strokes or heart attacks into our late forties and beyond. For those fifty and over, there is also a greater risk of fractures, which can be painful and take longer to heal than when we were younger.

Can proper warm up and cool down activities help condition the body prior to exercise?

While some experts question the value of warm up and cool down exercises, I highly recommend them. Have you ever seen a pro athlete jump into a game without having stretched and warmed up first?  No they always warm up and cool down because it has proven to be effective, Warming up makes you more flexible during a workout and it gets both the body and mind prepared for what is to come.

What constitutes a warm up exercise?

Any short, gentle exercise that helps get muscles and joints ready for a workout could be considered a warm up exercise. When not actively engaged, specific groups of muscles tighten up and become stiff. In this state, they simple are not ready for any kind of repetitive movement or action.

Warming up overcomes muscle stiffness. It also gets the heart ready for “workout mode”. You prepare the heart by gradually boosting the heart rate until it’s warmed up and ready. Only then is the heart ready for the intense aerobic demand of exercise.

The best way to warm up is with low-impact cardio exercises – like riding a recumbent bike or walking on your treadmill. Start at the lowest level of intensity and steadily ramp it up.

After just 10-15 minutes of warming up – your body is ready. You don’t have to own or have access to a stationary bike or treadmill. You can create the same result and warm up just as effectively by performing jumping jacks, burpees, or by skipping rope.

What about cool down exercises?

The purpose of Cool down exercises is to steadily reduce the activity level of the heart and muscles. At the peak of exercise, you heart and muscles are working their hardest. After a workout, it’s a good idea to taper off the level of intensity.

Muscle soreness after working out can be cut in half – simply by deploying cool down exercises. Various stretching exercises are a popular and effective way to cool down after a workout.

Yoga poses are another great way to cool down. There is much that can be learned from experienced yoga practitioners about movements and the body. Sign up for a local class and tap into this useful knowledge bank to better prepare for your workouts and prevent injuries.

What exercises help avoid injury?

Overusing any muscle or joint leaves you more susceptible to injury which can quickly bring your weight loss progress to a grinding halt. That’s why it’s always a better strategy to vary your exercises. That way, each muscle group will have time to recover before you begin engaging them once again through exercise. Doing the exact same set of exercises every day can actually damage the muscles and joints.

Never force your body to workout.

Warm up and cool down activities for exercising are important for everyone. If you have one or more problem areas like hands, wrists, or knees – be especially aware of these areas as you exercise. Whether it is currently a problem, or has been in the past, its remains an area that is injury-prone. So you’ll want to avoid placing too much strain here. Just be aware. Those with chronic conditions such as arthritis and inflamed joints should exercise an elevated degree of caution when exercising.

I’ll see you again in the continuation of this series. Stay tuned!

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