There is a natural tendency to want to start a workout quickly. After all, who is not pressured by time? But not taking the right measures before each training session can sabotage your results, and can lead to long-term injuries and illnesses.
With proper anticipation and proper warm-up, you'll have a more effective workout, be less susceptible to injuries, and produce the results you want. Here are four quick steps you can take to do just that.
Eat 60 to 90 minutes before training
Many people arrive at the gym without having eaten before their workouts. It does not matter if you train early in the morning, do not worry about feeling dizzy, or have the wrong idea that training on an empty stomach burns more fat, you're doing yourself a disservice by not feeding your body before a workout.
If you train right after you wake up - the only time many of us have because we work - you most likely have not eaten for 12 hours. Your body is hungry and it is unlikely to work to the fullest.
A pre-workout meal will give you the necessary energy and vitality. In addition, it boosts metabolism to contribute to protein synthesis, the process in which cells accumulate and produce proteins.
To increase strength, increase muscle mass and burn fat, aim for a pre-workout meal of lean proteins and slow-acting carbohydrates such as brown rice, oats or sweet potatoes.
If you start training only a few minutes after waking up, unable to prepare food, try a protein shake. Mix a tablespoon of protein whey with a glass of diluted orange juice to break the fast and provide the necessary nutrients for your morning workout.
Use a foam roller 10 to 15 minutes before training
There is a reason why many professional athletes have muscle therapy specialists working with them before games and practices. This treatment breaks knots in the tissues, improves muscle quality, and increases mobility.
Most of us do not have access to such experts, but fortunately we can get an effective massage with one of those long foam tubes that are probably sitting in the corner of your gym gathering dust.
After only 10 minutes of using the foam roller you will feel more agile and be able to perform exercises more effectively.
A simple way to use the foam roller is to start from the bottom and go up. Sit on the floor with your legs stretched out and the foam roller under one of your calves.Using pressure to guide your body on the foam roller, going through your calf muscles 6 to 8 times. Then switch to the other calf. If you find an especially tense area, keep the foam roller there until the tension is dissipated.
Use this same technique in the hamstrings, glutes, middle and upper back, dorsal, quadriceps and chest. Do not try it on the joints (such as the back of the knees) or the lumbar spine (lower back), as it can cause an injury.
Do dynamic mobility work 5-10 minutes before training
There is nothing wrong with static stretching, the traditional elongation movements we did for 30 seconds in the high school gym class. But just as a hot rubber band extends more easily than a cold one, we will perform static stretching after our training.
Before training, we will focus on dynamic mobility, the movements of the whole body that are maintained for only one or two seconds in each position. Recent research has shown that people who perform dynamic warm-up produce greater long-term advantages in mobility and flexibility, along with strength, than those who do static stretching or skip full warm-up.
You can develop a dynamic mobility routine to do before each training session or you can perform movements that work the muscles you will train that day. Either way, including 5 to 10 minutes of dynamic mobility raises your heart rate and prepares the main muscles for training ahead.
Effective dynamic movements to include before training are the elbow to the instep section, which works the glutes, hamstrings, calves and ankles; a stretch of the scapular wall for your scapula and shoulders; and a lateral extension-rotation for the mobility of the thoracic spine (see links at the end of this article for video demonstrations of each one).
Work specific warming at the beginning of training
Performing warming runs at 40% to 70% of your maximum for each of the heaviest surveys What you plan to do is an effective way to avoid injuries, prime the nervous system and improve performance during your work series.
If, for example, your two large lifts of the day are the front squat and the bench weights, you must perform two or three warm-up heats for each move in the same range of reps you will use during training.
So if you're planning front squats with 185 pounds in 6 reps, start with a series of 8 with 95 pounds, then a series of 6 with 135 and finally a set of 4 with 160 pounds.This will provide you with the proper balance to be prepared for work series without fatigue when performing too many warm-ups. A rule of thumb is: the higher the weight you want to lift, the more heating sets you should do.