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You’ve finally made the decision to get in shape or take your fitness goals to the next level. Unfortunately, you’re blindsided with a fitness injury just days into the program. Ouch! Where did you go wrong?
The fact of the matter is that many people excitedly start a new fitness routine without taking the possibility of injury into consideration. Even experienced gym-goers should take proper precautions before starting a new fitness routine. For example, if you’re a pro in the weight room but have never ran a day in your life, there’s a chance you could become injured when incorporating jogs into your workouts (or vice versa).
Whether you’re a seasoned athlete or just learning the ropes of fitness, injury is always a possibility when starting any workout. Do your research and follow these steps to prevent fitness injuries.
Talk to a Trainer or a Coach
A coach or trainer can create a workout routine that is in line with your personal goals and abilities, ensuring you don’t do too much too soon. Getting expert advice can also prevent you from doing the wrong exercises for your body type.
So many fitness injuries are a result of poor workout attire – especially shoes. If you can’t remember the last time you invested in a pair of gym shoes, it’s time to start shopping. Proper footwear has so much to do with the comfort of your workouts. So much so, you might even consider visiting a specialty shoe shop. Here you can gauge what shoe best fits with your arch, gait and body weight.
Warming up acts as mental preparation for the workout ahead. It also increases your body’s core temperature and gets the blood flowing to the right muscles. No matter what type of fitness activity you’re doing, a proper warm up is an absolute must.
Stretch (pre and post-workout)
Just like your warmup, stretching is imperative to any workout. Stretching increases flexibility and helps you perform better to minimize the risk of injury. As an added perk, stretching also gives you a longer, leaner look.
Starting a workout without proper hydration is like trying to drive a car without gas. Without it, the body cannot perform at its best. The least that can happen is that you will tire out quickly. However, passing out, muscle cramping and an over-elevated heart rate are other dangerous results of dehydration during exercise.
Did you know that your body is making physical gains even during rest and recovery time? It’s true! This is just one reason why resting is key to any workout regimen. Even the toughest athletes need to take break from physical activity, and your body will let you know when it’s in need of some R&R.
Signs that a rest day should be in your future include but are not limited to:
- Achy or painful joints
- Soreness lasting for more than 24-48 hours
- Low energy
- Trouble sleeping
- Overall sense of fatigue
Listen to Your Body
Overexertion is an open invitation for injury. One of the best ways to avoid injury during exercise is to know your body’s limitations. Have bad knees? Then the treadmill probably isn’t the best idea. Listen to your body and respect its needs. Your body will tell you when enough is enough.
Gaiam Restore 18-in. Foam Roller: Remember when we mentioned rest days? This foam roller will be your best friend as it offers your muscles a gentle yet deep massage.
ASICS GEL-Nimbus 17 Running Shoes: Take your next jog in style and comfort! These women’s running shoes are lightweight for superior comfort and performance.
Fitbit Charge HR Wireless Activity & Heart Rate Wristband: An activity & heart rate wristband such as this will let you know when you’re working too hard or not hard enough!
Have you ever been injured from a workout? Share your experience with the FitFluential community in the comments!