Whether you’re brand-new to the gym or have been working out for years, anyone can get injured. If you get hurt, it’s no cause for shame, but know that the best policy is to try to avoid injuries in the first place. Here are the easiest ways to avoid ending up in pain – or putting yourself out of action completely – while working out.
Remember to Warm Up and Cool Down
Before you jump right into a workout, take time to move around and gently stretch a bit first. You might jog in place, casually jump rope, or ride an exercise bike. This will help slowly bring your heart rate up to speed, and it will also warm your muscles and prepare your joints for the workout to come.
Similarly, cooling down before you end your workout will help you heart rate and body return to normal.
Variety is the Spice of Working Out
We understand that you’ve got goals and you’re eager to achieve them. However, if you go hitting the gym and working out the same muscle group every single day, you’re going to get an injury from overuse. Vary your workouts so you still get time in the gym but are working different parts of your body. You might run on one day, lift weights the next, and go cycling the following day. This will also keep you from getting bored with the same old, same old.
Hear Your Body Out
There’s a difference between pushing yourself through discomfort and doing something that’s excruciatingly painful. Listen to your body; it will often give you warning signs that you’re doing something you shouldn’t or using bad form. Make sure you’re giving it plenty of fuel and hydration, not to mention a day or so of rest each week.
Nothing will bring your workout regimen to a screeching halt like getting hurt, so be patient with yourself, use common sense, and listen to your body to keep it trim and healthy, as well as up and moving!