Many people start a new exercise program with commitment and enthusiasm. Eager to see quick results, they dive headfirst into a new routine. Unfortunately, some of them get sidelined with a fitness injury shortly after they start working out. With the right mindset and a few simple precautions, people can stay fit and avoid injuries. Here are six healthy tips to consider.
1. Warm Ups
A pre-workout warm up is an important part of an exercise program. It helps muscles and surrounding tissues get enough blood and nutrients to perform their required exercise tasks. Many people skip this important step and rush headlong into exercise. This shortcut can result in painful muscle tears that can take days to heal. Ten minutes of light running, jumping and other cardio routines is a good way to warm up for exercise. After exercise, a few minutes of low-intensity exercise helps the body cool down.
Stretching the muscles increases flexibility and gives people a leaner, longer appearance. Improved flexibility allows people to perform better during workouts. It also minimizes the risk of fitness injuries. Proper stretching is essential since bad form can cause painful ligament tears. People can stretch at any time, but stretching is especially important during warm ups and cool downs.
Exercising without drinking water before or during the workout is like driving a car with an empty gas tank. Without proper hydration, the body will start to shut down. This can cause collateral damage in the form of fitness injuries. How much water is necessary for a workout? According to WebMD, a good rule of thumb is twenty ounces of water an hour before exercise, ten ounces of water fifteen minutes before a workout and another eight ounces every fifteen minutes.
Good nutrition is just as important as good hydration. While the body uses fat cells for energy, the muscles need ready access to glycogen during a workout. Without this access, muscles can fail in the middle of activity and experience painful tissue tears. The body needs pre-workout carbohydrates for adequate glycogen stores and post-workout protein to repair muscle damage.
Rest is important for every athlete, from the weekend warrior to the marathon runner. Over-training can cause muscle soreness, intense physical discomfort, exhaustion and injuries. Most people need at least one day off from their workout regime each week.
Diligence is another way to avoid fitness injuries, especially in health clubs and fitness centers. Many accidents can occur in these settings. From slip-and-fall accidents to overexertion injuries to those involving faulty equipment, safety incidents can sideline athletes and cause permanent damage. Medical malpractice lawyers are available to counsel people in situations like this. They have the skills and expertise to get clients the compensation they deserve.
The body is an amazing machine that is equipped to deal with a number of stressors including physical exercise. Like all machines, it requires maintenance to work properly. Too much of a good thing – even exercise – can lead to negative results. However, with the right balance of hydration, nutrition, stretching and rest, most people can avoid injuries and stay fit and healthy.