What most commonly derails people’s progress in getting fit and staying healthy?
For people who lead active lifestyles, suffering a debilitating injury – such as tearing a knee or breaking a finger – can be demotivating.
While no one can avoid all risk to injury, there are certainly steps you can take to limit your exposure to getting hurt. While many of these steps take extra effort, they’ll pay off in the long run when your body is still strong heading into your older years.
So let’s talk shop on reducing the chance of those pesky injuries and freeing yourself of any worries about your health.
Start Exercises with Warm-Ups and End Them with Cool-Downs
In order to get the body ready to work out, warm-ups are crucial. They get your blood flowing and loosen your muscles and joints to handle the strain of physical activity.
Start with some dynamic stretching such as high knees, side shuffles, back pedals, lunges, etc. You can add some static stretching into your warm-up routine as well, but keep your focus on dynamic stretching.
Try to center your stretches and warm-up exercises on the areas of your body you will work out the most. If you’ll be running a few miles, try to get those legs churning a bit before heading out.
Once you wind down your workout, you’ll want to enter the cool-down phase. Here, you’ll aim to expel the lactic acid in your muscles while cooling your body down to a normal breathing and heart rate.
This is where static stretching is effective. Try loosening the areas of your body you just worked out. Remember, this should be done at a relaxed pace.
Don’t Rush Into Working Out
One way people get injured is by pushing too hard, even when their body isn’t adjusted to that pace.
Those who try running five miles after not having run in a long time will feel significant wear-and-tear on their bodies.
If you’re not in shape, try some light workouts first. Once those become a breeze, slowly acclimate yourself to higher levels of intensity.
Always keep tabs on how your body is feeling. If you ever feel too tired from a workout, scale it back the next time you exercise.
Rest Your Body
Our minds and bodies often are in conflict with each other.
Your mind might tell you that you need to work out every day of the year. I’m sure your body wouldn’t be too fond of all that physical activity with no break, however.
Alternate your workout routines to hit every part of your body in spaced-out intervals. For instance, focus on your legs and abs for one day, then switch it up to chest arms the next. This is called muscle confusion, and it limits the strain on your body from becoming excessive.
Also, it’s key to take days off. By giving your muscles time to recoup, you’ll decrease the chance of injury happening due to overworking your body.
Know the Difference Between Fatigue and Pain
It’s really easy to feel the pressure of pushing yourself to your absolute limit every time you step in the gym. After all, people can’t realize their fitness goals if they can’t battle through the fatigue of a gym session.
However, many people push themselves past a safe threshold. They ignore obvious injuries and prioritize their fitness dreams over their current health.
Know what parts of your body are broken down and need rest. If you have long-term physical issues, modify your workouts to avoid significant strain in your weaker areas.
At Fit Body, our trainers evaluate your physical health and can modify your workouts to account for any injuries.
Strap Up with the Right Equipment
Whenever you come back from injury, it’s imperative to be protected from re-injuring yourself. Constantly wearing down one region of the body leads to chronic physical problems.
For example, if you shatter your knee, wear a knee brace when you return to the gym.
This also means wearing proper equipment before any injuries occur. People who wear the wrong shoes to work out are at a higher risk of turning an ankle or developing callouses.
Check Your Form
This is where it’s helpful to have a friend or trainer who is knowledgeable about exercise. If someone exercises improperly, especially with weights, he or she puts unnatural stress on the body.
Each exercise is designed to accommodate for the body’s natural form and function. Go slow and steady, focusing less on your repetition count and more on your form.
When lifting too much weight, people tend to gravitate toward sloppy form. Lift less if you need to. A few good reps beat a lot of bad reps every time.
Our FBBC coaches monitor your form and ensure that you do any workouts properly.
Be Mindful of Your Environment
There’s a reason why basketball players love to play indoors as opposed to hustling on concrete.
With the outdoors, you face resistance from the forces of nature. Exercising on surfaces that are too rough can erode your joints quickly. Additionally, the chance of injury when you fall rises sharply because of the lack of give from the floor.
Match your environment to your exercise. If you move a lot during exercise, it might not be a bad idea to invest in some soft mats that will support your legs better. If you lift weights, it might be safer to exercise indoors where factors like wind or sunlight can’t distract your focus.
Sometimes, exercising outdoors is unavoidable. Try to modify your workouts to account for any natural safety hazards. If it rains or is too dark, for example, move your workout indoors!
Our boot camps feature state-of-the-art indoor equipment, all shielded from any conditions outdoors!
Don’t Overwork Yourself
People don’t needs to exhaust themselves to death in order to get a safe, solid workout in.
Try not to spend more time in the gym than you need to. This will minimize the tension your joints and muscles, allowing them to last longer.
Keep your workouts under an hour, taking breaks along the way and pacing your energy throughout that time.
The great thing about Fit Body is that all our workouts are 30 minutes long. You’ll get in a solid workout without feeling burnt out or over exhausted.