Archive for January, 2011

Warming Up for a Happy and Healthy 2011

Happy New Year!  Every new year can symbolize a new start and many people set their resolutions. Many “resolve” to go to the gym, workout more, lose weight, eat better, etc.  Instead of going full-tilt in January which usually results in a ‘crash and burn’ and a broken resolution, why not ease into it, like a warm-up for a workout and as you get fitter, stronger and more consistent, begin to increase time, intensity and before you know it, your “resolution to be healthier” becomes part of your lifestyle and not some short-ended unsuccessful plan. Instead plan for a healthier you year-round. Slow and steady, step by daily step, is typically the best way to start a new habit or life pattern.  You wouldn’t jump into a marathon without training for it, nor would you do a full sprint across a field without warming up…unless of course, you want to get injured or thwart your fitness or training plan.  A great way to start your “new year-round plan is with a great warm-up. A great warm-up gets you ready for a great workout.

Many of you have asked me over email or even posted on our Facebook page, “What is a Great Warm-up?”  How long should I warm-up?  Below are some tips and techniques I like to use for my own workouts and which I share with my own clients:

A warm-up is an important way for the body and the muscles to get ready for a workout. Most injuries occur at attachment sites of muscles and the warm-up is a critical way to help reduce these types of injuries. A proper warm-up gets the blood flowing through muscles and oxygenates the body as well, which in turn prepares the muscles for effective movement.

One good way to warm up is by using a foam roller, such as the CoreFitnessRoller.  A foam roller delivers self-myofascial release which helps increase blood flow within the muscle; ease and smooth the fascia and reduce areas of contraction thus getting muscles limber, long and ready for powerful movement.

So what is self-myofascial release (SMR)? SMR is a form of self-massage which is helpful for increased range of motion and relaxation of muscles.  When performed prior to a workout in place of static stretching, it helps create and maintain healthy muscle tone and also reduces the risk of potential injury or muscles tears caused by muscle contraction or tight muscles.

The SMR benefits of fascial and muscle release are wonderful before and after a great workout. In fact I believe whole heartedly that rolling before a workout is one of the critical steps to having a great workout. These elements combined also encourage the mind and body communication exchange, bring us more fully into a conscious presence in our bodies and create the mind-body connection; the first step towards a fantastic workout. All of this can be completed with simple moves within a 5-15 minute time span depending on your workout plan in each and every day.

I wish everyone a happy and healthy warm-up and the encouragement to gift yourself with permission for a wonderful New Year of year-round health!

Spread Health,

Darya

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