When you show up to the gym, what’s the first thing you do? Do you start with a few crunches? Pick up some dumbbells? Quickly scan for your crush and do what they’re doing? It’s really easy to forget the most important area of your workout - the warm-up!
Every good workout starts with a solid warm up. Why is warming up before you work out so important? Here are a few key reasons:
- Protects you against injury. Your warm-up loosens up your muscles and makes them ready for more strenuous work so they don’t snap under pressure.
- Improves your flexibility. It’s not hard to believe that moving your muscles makes them more flexible.
- Increases your heart rate. Remember, your heart is your most important muscle. It’s important to get it pumping before it needs to do hard work.
- Prepares your muscles for power. You got it - warming up your muscles gets them closer to the optimal temperature for performance.
- Decreases post-workout muscle pain. Warming up your body gives your muscles the extra room they need to rebuild after a workout and improves your blood flow to transfer the necessary nutrients to them.
There are two different kinds of warmups that are important to know.
Do 5 to 10 minutes of cardio of your choice (treadmill, bike, etc.). A very basic approach, but also very effective! End with a good stretch and make sure to keep your heart rate up.
Do 5 to 10 mintes of a warm-up that resembles the sport you’re playing. For example, if you’re a volleyball player, low intensity jumps and overhead shoulder stretches would be a great warm-up for the perfect spike.
Let’s be honest - all of this can be hard to remember… but don’t worry! When you use PumpUp to build a workout, you get an effective warm-up automatically targeted at the muscle groups you’ll be working. So remember, stay warm and pump up!