Here are the four biggest warmup myths that circulate among exercisers. These myths need to be blown out of the water if you want to have a productive, results-producing workout and lose weight in the safest and most healthy way.
Myth #1 Stretching is the best way to warm up before exercise.
Fact: Stretching is not the optimum way to warm up, particularly before any type of strength training or weight lifting, because your muscles are cold. Stretching cold muscles reduces the strength of muscle contractions and increases your odds of pulling or tearing a muscle. Light aerobic exercise is the best way to warm up, because it gets your muscles warm and pliable, plus increases blood flow. Then, when you do stretch, do it slowly and deliberately and stretch no further than you can hold for 5 seconds. And don’t bounce. Bouncing makes your muscles contract more to protect themselves and they can tear too easily.
Myth #2 I don’t need to warm up.
Fact: Not warming up is one of the biggest exercise mistakes anyone can make. It’s like asking someone to drive a car around the block when they’ve never driven before. They can injure them-selves. Warming up has numerous benefits, discussed above. Keep in mind, too, that a proper warmup enhances the efficiency and power of the working muscles—a benefit most people don’t realize.
Myth #3 I don’t need to warm up my legs because I use them all the time.
Fact: Not true. Your muscles are not being challenged in the same way by just walking around or normal, everyday movement. A proper warmup stimulates circulation tu your legs, preparing them for your circuit-training workout. Bottom line: Don’t neglect to warm up your legs.
Myth #4 I don’t need to warm up if I’m exercising indoors.
Fact: Light aerobic activity produces heat in your muscles; the warmth of your home or gym does little to increase your internal temperature, regardless of how high the thermostat is.