Lifting is better with warm-ups
By Muscle Media
Before you begin exercising or lifting weights, it’s important to take a few minutes to warm-up your muscles. Doing some light exercises actually warms up your muscles and makes them more flexible. This way, you’re less likely to injure yourself.
Some warm-up routines include exercise bike riding, walking, jogging, or even basic calisthenics. Don’t start at the pace you keep during your workout. Start slowly. Build momentum and energy as you go. Set an appropriate stopping time and move on with the rest of your workout.
When you begin lifting weights, start with a lower poundage to warm-up your muscles. Then, you can add more weight and start lifting. You won’t be as apt to injure a tendon or muscle-group because your muscles will be more limber and ready to handle the strain.
When lifting weights or doing any sort of exercise, you need to breathe. Some people have an odd habit of holding their breath during hard physical exertion or times of discomfort/pain. If you hold your breath during exercise, you can actually raise your blood pressure and put a greater strain on your heart and blood vessels.
Breathing sounds simple enough. But, to make it intentional during a workout, you should breathe in through your nose, taking long, deep breaths. Then, exhale through your mouth. Don’t reverse it, you’ll end up hyperventilating! Inhale on the lifting portion of an exercise, and exhale on the release.
Some gyms may have step exercises or jogging boards between the weight machines to help you keep your heart rate up. This lets you rest your muscles between each machine to keep your heart rate at an optimum level. You don’t want to lose the benefits of your exertion between stations at the gym!
After you’ve completed your strength-training workout, you want to allow yourself four or five minutes of light aerobic exercise to relax your body and give you a chance to breathe easier. Just walk around at a normal pace, then stretch lightly. You’ll be amazed at your flexibility and the ability you have to extend arms and legs further than before!
Before you think about exercising or doing weight training every day, there is something to consider. When you weight train to bulk up, your muscles are strained. For them to become stronger and larger, they need time to repair. Let your muscles rest a day in between workouts. Do some walking or aerobics instead, and you’ll maximize your workout.