Fitnessness

How to Stretch Before Workouts

Welcome to Motivation Monday! Today we are discussing the benefits of stretching.

 

“She Must Workout”…

Ok, ok….sorry if this is a little “crude”. I have a dry sense of humor I guess.

But seriously, If you think that the actual “working out” is the most important aspect of exercise…You might just be a little wrong.

Stretching is one of the most important things you can do before and after exercise! Especially if you are “getting up there in age”, like me.

The other day, my husband and I were working out together and we were “creaking”, and “cracking” as we were lifting weights and doing various workouts and stretching. Although we were laughing at each other about it, “creaking and cracking” is a serious (and normal) thing that happens as you start getting older.

If you’re under 30….you may be chuckling…JUST WAIT! You’ll get it in a few years. Trust me.

It is important to know what kind of stretches benefit you. Yes, there are so many stretches out there. But, you can look on google.com, Pinterest and a plethora of other places for proper stretches and stretch routines.

Once you find some that will benefit your type of workout, then start implementing them. You will FEEL the difference. Trust me.

Toxins

The trick to stretching is finding the types of stretches that benefit your “type” of workout. For instance, if I am focusing on leg day for my workouts, I will definitely need to stretch all of my lower body before and after the workout.

Not only does this “warm up” my muscles and prime them for my workout, but it releases toxins from your muscles (even more so AFTER your exercise).

When you workout, your muscles build up lactic acid. Although your body does a good job of naturally getting rid of that acid about an hour after exercise, stretching and massage does help the process.

Image result for lactic acid buildup in muscles
“During intense exercise, there may not be enough oxygen available to complete the process, so a substance called lactate is made. Your body can convert this lactate to energy without using oxygen. But this lactate or lactic acid can build up in your bloodstream faster than you can burn it off.” -webmd.com

Stretching also gives your body the relaxed sensation after exercise. Not to mention, flexibility.

Stretching and other forms of exercise assist with toxin removal because exercise increases oxygen levels in your cells. This in turn helps keep your cells stimulated and fueled for blood and lymphatic circulation, which are like engines in the processes of toxin removal. -http://livehealthy.chron.com/stretching-toxins-lactic-acid-muscles-7328.html

Finding a Routine

So you may ask, “what kind of stretches should I be doing?”. Oh boy…there are hundreds of different kinds of stretches out there! A lot of them are very beneficial, but some of them may not apply to what you may be “working on” that particular day.

So your research and see which stretches are best for you and your particular workout.

It is important to get into a routine of stretching though. I would say, BEFORE and AFTER exercise. Even if you can only do a few minutes of stretching.

Yoga is a great way to maintain flexibility and increase circulation. Personally, I have never been a big fan of yoga (I guess there is just too much patchouli and chanting involved. Lol.), but it is undoubtedly a great way to stretch.

Here is an example of a basic full-body stretch.

Stretching for Health

Maybe you have always thought of stretching as being something that people in yoga pants only do. Well my friend, it is not. It is a very important aspect to exercise and health.

You will see, after you start implementing stretching into your routine, that you will feel a lot more flexible, energized, less sore and generally great. You will also allow oxygen back into your muscles after exercise, and you will release lactic acid and toxins from our body when you stretch. There are so many great things that come from stretching! Not to mention…better sex (don’t get me started!).

The benefits of stretching are too good to pass up! Try some stretching today!

Have a blessed day!

-Z

 

 

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