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Saturday, July 23, 2011

Warming Up before Exercising

The hotter it is, the harder it is for me to be motivated to do workouts. I have hit the Summer Doldrums. I have discovered something, though. Just getting to the "warm-up" part of my routine makes all the difference in terms of my getting going and succeeding in maintaining my work out program.

I never got why my trainer always insisted on my taking 10 minutes at the beginning of each work out to "warm up" on a cycle, treadmill or elliptical. To me it seemed like a "waste of time". It is meant to be light paced and non-demanding in content. Not a great calorie burner or muscle builder. It was pleasant, though, and I got to watch my morning news shows. Then I hit the Summer Doldrums. My expectations have lowered considerably.

It is so hot, it is hard to sleep well, even with the windows open. So first I convince myself to get out of bed in the morning...then to get on my exercise clothes. Then I start the "just" conversations. "Just go to the "Y" and do a little rote exercise"..."Just get on the cycle and do 10 minutes and then see how you feel".  I don't ask too much of myself..."just" to get going and do something. That seems to do the trick.

Once I do get going, I am set. What I have found is that the simple warm up has great power. It warms up my muscles AND my brain. After 10 minutes on the stationary bicycle my ability and capacity to go for the total routine is in gear. It doesn't seem impossible to lift weights or interact with machines. In fact, I always enjoy it.

So now I get the importance of my 10 minute warm up and the gumption it gives me.