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Are you planning to start 2017 with good intentions? Are you hoping to get in shape and be more active? If so, the last thing you want is injury to pay to your plans. If you’re new to exercise, these workout tips will help you steer clear of injury and ensure you’re fighting fit.
Make sure you know what you’re doing
This sounds obvious. But you’d be surprised at how many people rock up at the gym and attempt to use machines they’ve never even seen before. With gym equipment, technique is important. If you use the machines in the wrong way, or you try and do too much, you run the risk of injury. If you are joining the gym for the first time, it’s always a good idea to book an induction. Some centers will insist on this before you can start using the facilities. Another way of familiarizing yourself with the equipment is to work with a personal trainer.
It’s essential to warm up before every workout you do. If you go full throttle into a workout, you’re going to do some damage. The warm up is designed to raise your heart rate and get blood circulating around the body. This increases blood flow to your muscles and prepares them for what’s in store. If you don’t warm up, there’s a high risk of pulled muscles, connective tissue injuries, and fractures. Your warm up should include a combination of stretches and light cardio exercises. Typically, it will last between five and fifteen minutes.
Drinking and eating
If you’re exercising on a regular basis, it’s important to ensure that you’re taking in enough fuel and fluid. If you workout on an empty stomach, you’re likely to feel dizzy, and you may not have the energy to give the session your all. When you’re working your body, you lose fluid through sweat, and you need to replace this to prevent dehydration. If you’re dehydrated, this can cause tiredness, weakness, and lightheadedness. It’s always a good idea to eat at least an hour before a workout and to drink water before, during, and after the session. If you don’t want to use tap water, you can buy a product like the berkey water filter and take a bottle with you.
You’ve worked hard, and all you want to do is get in the shower and rest. It’s understandable to want to flee the gym as quickly as possible after a grueling workout. But it’s imperative that you stick around and do a cool down. If you stop suddenly, this can make you feel faint, and increase the risk of lactic acid build-up. A cool down will enable your body to get rid of waste products and bring your heart rate down gently. When you do your cool down, include some very light cardio drills and lots of stretches.
If you’re keen to begin the New Year with a bang, the last thing you want is an injury to put pay to your good intentions. Hopefully, these simple tips will enable you to get the best of your sessions and prevent injuries. Good luck!