7 Reasons Why You Should Warm Up Before Workouts
A warm-up before workouts is like when an airplane taxies on the runway before take-off.
In many ways, it prepares your body for the stretch, pull, push, and high intensity and rest periods of your exercise.
Besides that physical preparation, warming up before workout can also prepare you psychologically.
I like to workout early in the morning and on most cold days, I don’t want to wake up early, let alone get out of bed.
But when I do and go to the gym, the first thing I do is to start warming up. After a few minutes of warming up, I feel awake and more stoked to do my reps and set.
Several studies have shown that a warm-up before workouts has great benefits. In the rest of this article, let’s look at the specific benefits in detail and see why warmups are important.
1. You increase muscle temperature
Before you jump into full-fledged working out, your muscles need energy. And this is what they obtain from pre-workout exercises.
When you warm up before a workout, blood in your muscles flow and produce a series of chemical reactions.
This leads to the slow burn of fats and carbohydrates and which in turn starts an increase in your muscle temperature.
The heat muscles experience during warmup is directly proportional to the work they will perform in the gym.
2. You improve blood circulation
Blood is always circulating in the body. But the wrong body temperature can hinder blood flow. This is where warmups come into play.
When the blood passes through an already warm muscle, its temperature rises. The body is alerted about the upcoming physical activity.
The more intensive workout will be, the more oxygen your body requires. And when blood is warm, it can bring more oxygen to muscles – playing a great role in a full-body workout.
3. You enhance blood vessel dilation
The major benefit of warm-up before workouts is that it dilates blood vessels. And dilated blood vessels carry more blood, which ultimately helps in exercising.
A researcher from Colorado state university gathered a report on the topic. It looks at the role of adenosine triphosphate, commonly known as ATP.
This is released by the red blood cells and dilates the blood vessels. During warm-up, muscles contract and expand, thus demanding more blood.
This is when red blood cells release adenosine triphosphate, which is there to open the vessels when needed.
During work out, your muscles will be given an uninterrupted supply of blood. Go and warm up before you work out.
4. You improve the body’s range of motion
When you warm-up, the whole body moves in one or the other way. It increases the range of motion of an athlete. The range of motion means a movement of muscle and direction in which it can go.
A study conducted by CDC details an estimate that a male aged between 20 to 44 possess the range of motion up to 168.8 degrees when it comes to shoulders flexion.
Your desired range of motion can be different depending on your goals.
A bodybuilder may strive for a short range of motion while a long range of motion is necessary for Olympic lifters. The range of motion decreases with age.
5. You prevent overheating
Overheating may include heavy sweating, tiredness, extreme thirst, and muscle cramps. There are chances that workout without warm-up may bring extreme heat to your body.
When you go straight into the gym without warming up, your body is not ready. The workout you do produces heat, as mentioned earlier, which can overheat your body and results in stopping you from working out.
However, the human body maintains an inherent cooling system if you let it work in a conducive environment (i.e., warm-up before workouts).
When you warm up before workouts, your body strives harder and thus sweats more. This sweating is what you need before you enter the gym to rock.
6. You trigger the right body hormones
Workouts can regulate certain hormones in the human body. However, warm-ups alone can regulate them.
Trying to go hard in the gym without a warm-up is not going to do any benefit, rather it will bring destruction to the body affecting it in several ways.
We intend to name some hormones which are regulated by a warm-up. The first is Endorphins, which is secreted from pituitary glands and helps in relieving pain and anxiety.
A warm-up can increase the amount of estrogen and testosterone, sexual hormones in females, and males, respectively.
Irisin is another hormone identified recently, which is regulated by a warm-up and helps in turning white fat into brown ones.
7. You improve mental preparation
You need to be prepared mentally for doing anything. Psychological preparation is necessary before you jump into the physical one. Anything can be won only when it is won in mind.
That is what warm-up makes you capable of. Your simple stretching postures can help in boosting the levels of energy in your body. Go for it and do a great session in the gym.
Tips For Warming Up Before Workouts
Here are a few tips for warming up.
Temperature. The first one is to maintain a feasible temperature for your warm-up session. Neither it should be cold nor too hot.
Clothing. Dress according to the temperature outside (or inside). Sometimes, you need heat because it is not hot out there.
Timing. Do warm-up for 5 to 10 minutes. Don’t underdo it (a minute) or overdo it (an hour). Your hurry will not cause any benefit, and excessiveness will drain your energy.
Water. Remember to drink water when you warm up.
Repeat it at every workout.