As we continue the fitness theme this month, we are discussing ways to support our bodies before, during and after exercise. Make sure to check out the video portion where I've discussed briefly to warm up, hydrate, fuel and stretch!!
Let's talk about ways to warm up. When I first began working out, it seemed to me like the warmup was the work out!! Who else has been there?? But why is it so important to warm up? For starters the last thing we want to do is injure ourselves. So warming up prepares our bodies to increase the heart rate and increase the blood flow to major muscle groups. You should do at least 5-10 minutes of warm up. Here are some easy ways to get the blood pumping and oxygen flowing!!
- Make big circular motions with your arms. Do this several times on both sides.
- Kick your leg forwards and then backwards like a pendulum with continuous movement. Alternate with both legs several times.
- Jog in place for 1 minute.
- While jogging in place, kick your heels up to try to touch your back end for 30 seconds or so.
- While jogging in place, lift your knees almost in a marching method, for 30 seconds or so.
This warmup is for mild to moderate exercise, make sure if you are doing more intense exercising that you dedicate more towards 15-20 minutes of warm up!
The post work-out stretch is just as important to really stretch those muscles that we just worked out to reduce muscle fatigue and really help our muscles recover! Here are 7 must haves I like to do. You should be spending 10-15 minutes stretching those muscles!
Sit upright and tall with your shoulders relaxed. Bring your left ear down toward your left shoulder and feel the stretch. Roll your head down toward the ground and bring your chin to your chest and hold. Finish by rolling your head to the right bringing your right ear to your right shoulder.
- Chest & Biceps
Stand tall, interlace your fingers behind your back and straighten your arms. With arms straight, lift arms up behind you while keeping your back straight and your shoulders down. Keep your shoulders relaxed and away from your ears. I know some of you are not going to be able to reach behind you. You can also put your right arm out straight in front of you, grab your elbow with your left hand and pull in towards your body. Repeat on the other side.
Stand tall and place your left elbow in you right hand. Reach your left arm overhead placing your palm on the center of your back and supporting the elbow in your right hand. Reach your fingertips down your spine. Keep your shoulder relaxed and away from your ears. Repeat with the opposite arm.
Stand tall, with your shoulders down and feet hip-width apart. Bring your left leg forward, heel down, toes up and leg straight. Keep your back straight, abs strong and bend the right knee as if sitting back while supporting yourself with both hands on your thighs. Repeat on opposite side.
Stand tall, holding on to the wall for balance if required. Keep your feet hip-width apart, your back straight and your feet parallel. Reach back and grab your left foot in your left hand, keeping your thighs lined up next to each other. Repeat on opposite side.
Start on your hands and knees with your hands shoulder-width apart, knees hip-width apart, abs engaged, and your back in a strong but neutral position. Switch on your abs as if pulling your belly button into your spine. Allow your head and neck to fall naturally between your arms.
- Hips and Glutes
Bend your left knee, and cross your right ankle at your left knee. Grab the back of your left thigh and pull your legs toward your chest. Place your right elbow on the inside of your right knee and push it outwards to feel the stretch. Repeat on opposite side.
There is one more thing I do to help support my body before, during and after exercise and that is using my essential oils. Before exercise, I make sure to apply peppermint to my chest or use my Breathe Again rollon. Either one of these keep my air waves open and make exercising much more pleasurable. Peppermint has been found to increase performance by up to 20%, another great reason to use this one!! During exercise, especially during longer workouts or more intense workouts, I like to drink AminoWise. This triple blend workout supplementation is a great targeted drink. The Muscle Performance blend aids muscle building and repair, the Recovery blend helps reduce muscle fatigue, and the Hydration Mineral blend replenishes important minerals lost during exercise. During less intense workouts, I will drink this at the end of my workouts. And the last couple of products I use are Copiaba Vitality, which I add to my water to aid in muscle fatigue and helps my body with overall inflammation and topically I use another roller called Deep Relief. It does exactly what the name says. I personally choose essential oils as I know they are not full of harmful chemicals and they are not putting more stress on my organs with fragrances or toxins that can accumulate in my body.
Make sure to get my favorite delicious healthy recipes for snacks to have before and after working out!
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I'd love to hear how you support your body during exercise! Leave your comments below!!
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