Pretty often, you’ve only just managed to slump out of bed or you’ve been sitting at your desk all day before you put on your trainers and head out on to the road for your run.
But did you really take the time to warm up properly? Really though? `
Most of us only walk or jog for a couple of minutes or do some cursory stretching before venturing out on our run and ramping up the pace.
At Mbition we recommend that you warm up for between five to twenty minutes, depending on the type of session you are doing. Whilst you can ease into a longer and less arduous training run, a session that will incorporate more speed and stress on the body will require a more thorough warm up to compensate for the intensive effort.
Start with a walk
Walking is an awesome place to start as it elevates your heart rate and increases blood flow to the major muscles you will use when you eventually start running. It’s not just your legs that are involved in running either, so get your arms swinging to warm up the upper body too.
Walking with a longer stride will also stretch out your hip flexors, wake up your hamstrings and glutes, and gently stretch your achilles and lower leg muscles.
You can start to increase your walking pace by swinging your arms faster, so you really start to elevate your heart rate - increasing your breathing at the same time and getting your body ready for action.
Don’t forget your trunk muscles!
Both your core and your back have to work hard when running to keep you stable from the opposing forces generated by moving from leg to leg. Try gentle twisting movements such as high knees across the body or if you are feeling coordinated try Side Steps. Move sideways by stepping directly to the side with one foot, and then step behind with the other. Repeat the action so you travel in one direction like a day-glo crab.
Take it up a notch
So by this stage you should be feeling loose and your heart rate should be elevated. Start to build up to a jog, keeping your shoulders relaxed and bringing your attention to your body. How is it feeling? Do you have any niggles or tight muscles that might need a bit more time to warm up?