Once more (and never again) about warmup

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Summer is practically here, the weather is hot during the day, but that won't warm you up for your workouts. We'll show you to do a better warmup.

It's true, you shouldn't rely on the weather when it comes to warmup before a hard workout session. But how does a professional warmup look like? We'll show you how we do it at Builder. Maybe you'll get surprised.

But before jumping right into the practical stuff, let's see why it is important do do warmups at the first place:

  • thanks to the warmup the muscles and the connective tissues will be more loose and elastic, that means you will be stronger in your workout, you will be able to lift a bit more weights
  • the range of motion of the joints and ligaments will increase, which can prevent a lot of injuries in the long run
  • warmup increases blood flow (= better pump = better muscle gains)
  • warmup kickstarts nervous system activity (= better mind-muscle connection)
  • joints will get warmed up, so the risk of an injury decreases
  • warmup helps you "tune in" into the workout (= better mental focus = better performance)

And these are just the most important benefits of a workout.

The point is, you have to prepare your whole system for the upcoming stress. Weight lifting exercises are stressful for your body, and if you just jump right into the workout without any warmup whatsoever, that's like solving a complex math task right after waking up for your body. Think about warmup like it's a good strong coffee in the morning.

General warmup

You should do some light cardio (5-10 minutes) only any cardio machine before ANY workout. You don't have to sprint the whole time, because we know that doing real cardio is a performance killer before a weight lifting workout, because it requires too much energy – energy that is needed for the weight lifting workout.

So start the first couple of minutes with walking, if you're fit enough, increase the tempo or run for a couple of minutes, then finish the cardio warmup with walking.

Only skip this part of the general warmup if you feel that it restrains your performance in the gym. Important: saying "I don't have enough time" is not an excuse. If you have time to train, you must have time to warm up properly.

Upper body warmup (for upper body workouts)

After the general 5-10 min warmup, do the following "warmup workout plan" in any sequence of order, as long as you feel its comfortable, but don't do too much, your muscles should not be pumped up:

  • arm circles
  • wrist circles
  • shoulder circles
  • rotator cuff warmup

Lower body warmup (for lower body workouts):

After the general 5-10 min warmup, do the following "warmup workout plan" in any sequence of order, as long as you feel its comfortable, but don't do too much, your muscles should not be pumped up:

  • ankle circles
  • knee circles
  • hip circles

After you are done, you can start your workout, but the very first set of the first exercise should be done with light weigts and with high repetitions.

In addition

You should also consider implementing some active stretching in your warmup program.

Warm-up balms are also great tools to have in your inventory, these can increase the effectiveness of a warmup even more, and they can also ease joint pain by warming up the joints better.

A few last words: the warmup shouldn't be too short, and shoudln't take too long. I'd say you should be done in under 10 to 15 minutes.

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