The Exercises You Should Have In Your Warm Up
I had a Live Lean TV viewer ask my what they should be doing in their warm up. It’s a much debated topic (like most other fitness and nutrition topics), but as with anything I recommend, I’ve incorporated what I’m about to tell you into my routine…and I have never had a serious injury.
First of all, as I mention in the video, proper warm ups are very important to a safe and effective workout. It’s like the foreplay before sex!
But what type of foreplay…I mean warm up…should you be doing. Static stretches (stretch and hold) or dynamic stretches?
I always go with dynamic stretches, in other words, movements that mimic the exercise to come. If you want to incorporate static stretches into your routine, please do these at the end of your workout. You SHOULD NOT be stretching a cold muscle. This can lead to injury.
The best way to warm up a muscle is via dynamic stretching.
Here are the 4 reasons dynamic stretching is important BEFORE your workout:
1. It helps warm up the muscle. You DO NOT want to go into the gym and begin lifting heavy weight with cold muscles. Besides improper form, this is one of the leading causes of injuries in the gym.
2. It helps increase the synovial fluid around the joint. Just like a car engine needs oil, your body needs a lubricant around the joints. A warm up doing light exercises (high reps) that mimic the workout you’re about to do will help with this. For example, if you’re doing a leg workout, you will want to increase the synovial fluid in the knee joint, etc.
3. It helps elevate your heart rate and start pumping blood to the working muscles. Again, this is very important. You’ll be sending blood to the muscles, by using light weight (or bodyweight) with high reps that targets the muscles you’ll be working out.
4. It helps to get your mind on task. I know how life can be. Your boss may be yelling at you, your significant other may be mad at you, etc. If these things are on your mind…you could easily injure yourself when lifting weight. Your mind needs to be focused on using proper form and taking the weight through full range of motion. A warm up will allow you to get your mind to where it needs to be!
Sample Warm Up Based on the Muscle Groups Being Worked
Legs: Warm up set:
Option 1: Body weight squats or squats with an empty olympic bar x 20 reps.
Option 2: Body weight lunges x 20 reps.
Back: Warm up set:
Option 1: Seated Lat Pull Down with 50% of the weight you normally lift x 20 reps.
Option 2: Assisted Pull Ups
Chest: Warm up set:
Option 1: Push ups x 20 reps
Option 2: Bench press using an empty olympic bar x 20 reps
Arms: Warm up set:
Shoulders: Barbell shoulder press using an empty olympic bar x 20 reps
Biceps: Curls using 50% of the weight you normally lift x 20 reps
Triceps: Straight bar push downs using 50% of the weight you normally lift x 20 reps
Core: Warm Up Set:
Plank x 30 secs
Your warm up should take about 5-7 minutes. However, if you’re feeling really cold, go through another set, adding a little more weight (60%) and lower the reps to 15.
Here’s the video of me discussing How To Safely Warm Up Before A Workout:
I hope you enjoyed this video on How To Safely Warm Up Before A Workout.
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Check out one of my fat burning Jump Rope Tabata workouts.