BY MONIQUE BARTLETT
You’ve started your workout routine and everything is going great. You’ve started to lose weight, you’re feeling great and then all of a sudden you experience your first injury! Whether it’s a twisted ankle, sore back or pulled muscle, all of the gains you’ve made may slowly come to an end. You get down on yourself and think that this is the beginning of the end. You ask yourself why you even bothered to start working out in the first place. Every time you try to get healthy something gets in the way.
This doesn’t have to happen. The last thing you need when you’re working so hard to reach your goal is to have an injury get in the way of your workouts and you reaching your goal. In order to stay healthy there are a few things you need to do. The most important thing to do is to take time to warm up. Don’t just jump right into your workout. Time is precious and we are all busy but take the time to slowly ease into your workout with at least a ten minute warm-up.
Stretching is also essential. Take the time to stretch during your workout. It’s just as important to stretch after your routine as well. By loosening up your muscles you lessen the chance that you will twist or pull a muscle during your workout routine. It’s also essential to learn proper form. Knowing how to use the equipment at the gym or how to do moves properly in an exercise class can keep you safe and healthy. If you’re not sure, ask someone or hire a trainer to get started. It’s better to spend a few dollars in the beginning with a professional than to think you know what you’re doing and end up injured instead.
Make sure you pace yourself as well. Don’t cram all of your exercise into a day or two. Spread out your activity throughout the entire week. Trying to squeeze your workouts into one or two days can definitely result in injury. Make sure to mix up your exercise routine as well. By doing different types of exercise your body doesn’t get used to it and you won’t hit a plateau. Pay attention to how you’re feeling during your workouts as well. There are many times when our body gives us signs that it has had enough but we keep going and that is how injuries happen. Remember that overexertion can easily lead to injury and ruin all of the gains you’ve made.