Warm ups: is it really worth the time or effort?
Over the years the science of fitness has changed and with it the knowledge related to
getting fit at the gym. Warms ups is one of those areas where things have changed
quite considerably and now is a good time to update you on what will work best for
you when you exercise.
If you are coming to Suncoast Fitness to improve your fitness and burn some calories
towards weight loss, the best warm up you can do is as follows
Start with an easy 5-10 min of light aerobic activity and slowly let your body
warm up and heart rate increase.
Spend 5-10 min of stretching the major muscle groups of the lower legs and
Go back to your cardio equipment and start your workout
Why this helps?
Your body needs to increase its effort and build up to the level at which you will work
as this allows your heart rate and breathing to work more effectively in your workout
If you are working towards getting stronger and bigger, the warm up can be quite
different. Many people still prefer to warm up as if they are doing a cardio workout,
but the other option you might consider is as follows. Use this only if you intend to do
only gym work and no cardio.
Perform a dynamic warm up of movement exercises for 5-10 min using
exercises such as walking lunge with twist, overhead squat, push-ups, and
medicine ball rotations (see your trainer for more specific exercises for you).
Spend 5 min light stretching to deal with any areas that are more tight than
Perform a light warm up set for each exercise in your program at about 50% of
your normal weight before each exercise
Then perform work sets after each warm up set.
Why this helps?
Strength training does not use the aerobic system so often we don’t need to do a cardio
warm up and more specific exercises which loosen us up for the gym exercises can be
of tremendous value and create more variety.
A good warm up makes your session more effective and improves your enjoyment by
easing you into your session.
By Mark McKean PhD AEP
Now available to help you with your fitness goals on limited days at Suncoast Fitness