A proper Warm up should be an essential part of every workout routine.
While kids nowadays seem to ignore it, a proper warm-up can be very beneficial in improving your training and keeping your body injury free.
In this article, we will discuss the importance of warming up. Also, how to design your own warm-up routine. So, next time you go to the gym you will be primed to power through your workouts every single time you step foot in the gym.
The Importance Of Warming Up
Warming up will do a few things that will prepare you to hard workouts, this would include:
-Increasing blood flow to your joints and helps increase the fluidity of movement, which protects against injury.
-It will also raise the temperature of your blood, which also guards against muscle pulls.
-Pumping more blood to your muscles. When blood is pumped into your muscles, they can contract more forcefully and efficiently. This leads to faster growth.
How To Properly Warm Up
First of all, a good warm-up should not take more than 10 possibly 15 minutes at most, Not 1 hour. At the gym we typically there are two types of people. There is those who will head right away to the squat rack after being slumped on a desk for 8 hours at work. And others who spend 45 minutes running and stretching before touching a single weight.
While you definitely don’t need to go all crazy with warming up, a quick and dynamic workout is essential to prepare you to your workout and help you avoid injury.
A good warm-up routine should have 3 phases:
1-Pre warm-up cardio:
Whether your goal is to gain muscle or lose bodyfat it is always a good idea to start with 5–10 min of low-intensity cardio. It will help to increase the body temperature and increase blood flow. Don’t go crazy with it, you shouldn’t exhaust yourself during a warm-up. Just make sure to get a little sweat before you start.
I personally would suggest the use of the Airdyne bike if your gym has one. The Airdyne Bike is quick and efficient for a general full body warm-up. If you have this old-school staple at your disposal, or a modern Assault Bike, use it. It has the ability to make your lungs bleed, so go at a moderate pace for 3-5 minutes tops to limit the fatigue.
The next part that I like to do is to perform a quick circuit of bodyweight exercises. This will loosen up the muscles and activate the CNS. Remember, the goal of this circuit is not to push yourself to failure or set nex PR’s in bodyweight movements. We are just trying to warm you up for our training.
Here is an example of a warm-up circuit:
1-Jumping jacks, 20-30 reps.
2-Alternate toe touches 20-30 reps each side.
3-Push-ups, 10-15 reps.
4-Side bends, 20-40 reps.
Do this exercises as a circuit. Now you should be ready for your workout.
Besides being the rage among most professional bodybuilders and gym goers
back in the 90s, static stretching is now officially dead. It has been shown that it actually might be limiting your strength potential and growth.
The reason is that static stretching activates your slow twitch muscle fibers, and that’s great if you are about to run a marathon. But, if you trying to lift heavy weights and grow maximum muscle mass this is bad news.
A great alternative, however, is dynamic stretching. As the name implies it revolves around performing some dynamic movements to prime your muscle for handling heavy loads. And while there is a lot of dynamic stretches around, I like to stick to the following movements:
-Alternating Jumping Lunges:
This a great move to activate your CNS and your leg muscles, if you find it very challenging you can start by using reverse lunges instead and progress from there. Do about 8 reps per side on this exercise.
-Backward Toe Touches
Walk backward and kick a leg up behind you. As you kick your leg back, reach forward for your front toe with the opposite hand. Do 8 reps for each side.
-Quad Bird Dog:
This movement incorporates a coordinated contraction of the leg and arms simultaneously, both working off a strong core position.
Do 10-12 reps per side.
-Alternating Forward Lunge With an Overhead Reach
The lunge facilitates active hip extension. Accentuate this movement with a spinal extension by placing hands overhead on each step. This movement not only addresses tightness in the hip flexors on the back leg, but it also helps stimulate functional stability of the glutes and hams on the front leg.
Do a regular push up. but as you push yourself back up, extend your right arm to the sky while keeping your left arm stable. After that, bring your arm to the starting position, do another push-up and lift your left arm this time.
This is a great exercise to warm up your entire upper body and activate your core. It is also good for improving overhead shoulder mobility.
Do 6 reps per side.
Now, after you finished the 3 phases of this warm-up routine you should be able to tackle the weights like a wild beast. Try it for yourself. You will be able to lift heavier and for an extended range of motion.
Also, another crucial thing to remember is to ramp up your weight progressively during the first exercise of each body part. So, if your routine call for 5 sets of 5 of barbell squats. Don’t start with your 5 rep max right away, however, increase the weight slowly over 2 or 3 sets until you reach the desired weight.
Now you are ready to dominate your workout.