Do you spend some time before every workout warming up? You should. Warming up gets your heart rate up and gets your blood flowing. This means more oxygen reaches your muscles so that you are primed and ready to utilize more oxygen when exercising. Warming up also activates the connections between the nerves and muscles so you can move more freely faster. 

Unfortunately, a lot of people skip the warm-up. And there are a lot of reasons why: 

  • Too little time — Some people who only have a short amount of time to exercise may feel like they are not using that time effectively to spend time on stretches and other movements. 
  • Do not know if it is beneficial — A lot of people do not warm up because they do not know that it can help them have a better workout and avoid injuries. 
  • Not interested — Let’s face it, sometimes it is hard to even get the workout in. For some people, their interest levels fall through the floor once talk of touching their toes starts. 
  • Overconfidence — Conversely, some people think they have already achieved prime physical condition and do not need to exercise. Well, congratulations on the progress, but do not believe this myth. 

Why Is Warming Up Before Exercising Important? 

It is important to make warming up a regular part of your preworkout routine and there are two big reasons. First, it will make your workout better and more effective by gradually preparing your muscles, tendons, joints, and ligaments for more strenuous activity. And that leads to the second reason — warming up reduces your risk of injury. 

How to Warm Up 

Before each workout, spend at least five to ten minutes warming up. There are many ways to warm up but, no matter which you choose, begin with low intensity movements and gradually increase the intensity so your body can adjust. Below are a few of our favorites: 

  • Dynamic stretching: Move your muscles through their full range of motion (arm circles, for example). 
  • Cardio: Go for a jog, do some jumping jacks, or ride a bike. 
  • Foam Rolling: Using a foam roller can help to loosen and prepare tight muscles. 

Exercise With Us Here at the McKendree MetroRec Plex 

Looking for a place to get your workout on? We have a state-of-the-art, full-service sports complex with facilities like none other in the region. It features two NHL-sized ice rinks, an aquatic center fit with a 10-lane championship swimming pool and recreational pool, a contemporary fitness area and many other amenities — including ample room to warm up! 

Memberships and daily passes are available. We hope to see you soon!