Warming up is a crucial, yet often overlooked part of a workout. By warming up first, you help prepare your body for training, minimise risk of injury and get a better workout!
In other words, a warm-up preps your muscles for activity and helps increase your bodily awareness by improving the way you work out. Warming up also has positive effects on your mental focus during a workout, giving you the mental clarity to get the job done and do it well.
Why is warming up so important?
Warming up raises your body temperature and helps your blood pump faster! This process improves your coordination and sense of balance throughout your entire workout and promotes the transport of oxygen and nutrients to your working muscles, including your brain. You’ll notice better mental focus and a renewed sense of motivation.
The Warm Up Checklist
Remember these tips when crafting your next warm-up routine:
- Go big or go home. Engaging your biggest muscles (like your quads and glutes) while keeping your movements big and easy, will ensure you achieve the optimum body temperature for a warm up!
- How hard should it be? A good warm-up should start in a relatively low intensity and increase gradually. This is important if you want to prevent muscle cramps.
- What kind of exercises? Adapt the warm-up to your workout activity. For example, if you plan to do a back workout, then do a warm up for the upper body.
- How long? A usual warm-up should be about 7-10 minutes, although doing a few jumping jacks can be sufficient to warm your muscles before working out too. It will always depend on how strenuous the workout will be following your warm-up, the more difficult and longer the exercise session, the longer the warm-up should be.
- A solid warm up. All of Seven’s workouts are good choices for warm ups, including the Warm Up workout. If you only have time 7 mins of exercise a day, that’s okay too, Seven includes a short warm up in every workout. Just pick your favorite workout and workout!
Reviewing the Basics
Let’s say you plan to go for a run. Your warm up should target the specific muscles you’ll be using most throughout your session, like the glutes, calves and quads (your legs). You can do a warm-up by making the same running movements but slower and with more control. Or, to prepare for a squat workout, you can do lunges or jumping exercises.
A more general warm up can be good to get the body’s larger organs working, to ensure your heart and lungs are ready for activity. A good basic warm up prepares the body with large dynamic movements that engage the larger muscles of the body. One simple and effective warm-up exercise is jumping jacks.
Always make sure you’re properly warmed up before a workout to ensure you get the best workout session and prevent injury. To make sure you’re ready for each and every training session, Seven has incorporated a short warm up exercise at the beginning of most Seven workouts!