Working out is a vital part of daily life. Whether it is a walk on the beach or a more active and vigorous workout regime, there are a few tips to getting the most out of your exercise healthily and safely. Even the most experienced fitness fanatics get injured from time to time; it is a lot easier to prevent serious injury with a few of the basics down.
It is a well-known fact that exercise benefits are vast, from heart health to overall quality of life. There are even more benefits from exercising correctly and safely.
Understanding safety and proper form are easy ways to reduce injury and get better results from your workouts. Safety doesn’t always mean wearing a crash helmet and body armour; sometimes, it is as simple as learning proper form or how to prevent injury post-workout.
Top Tips to Staying Safe
Some of the best tips are pretty obvious; however, they are sometimes still overlooked and are often the most important.
#1 – Staying Hydrated
Staying hydrated is a very important element of any workout. When working out, it is essential to get enough water before, during, and after. This prevents any muscle stitches, as well as overheating and dehydration. Sweat helps you cool down throughout a workout; however, the sweat comes from water within your body. Dehydration can lead to unbearable muscle cramps too!
Stying hydrated to replenish those stores will keep you performing at your best throughout the workout.
#2 – Don’t forget to stretch
Preparing for a workout by stretching to activate the muscles is as important as staying hydrated. Studies have shown that preparing for a workout by stretching can reduce the risk of injury and delayed onset muscle soreness, also known as DOMS. A great stretching routine before your training can benefit your performance during your workout.
Stretches can be as simple as a quick pull-up band routine (Check out the bands at Victorem) or as simple as a yoga sequence. Your warm-up and cool-down can be as short as 5 minutes; it is, however, one of the most crucial parts of your exercise.
#3 – Go Slow and Steady
There are few things that are better than the feeling of getting excited to train and get in shape; it must be said that slow and steady wins the race. Starting easy and working your way up to fitness is vital to staying safe. It is better to lift lighter weights in your strength training than go for the heaviest weight and pulling a muscle.
Professional fitness fundis all had to start somewhere and work their way up.
#4 – When in Doubt Reach Out
When it comes to any kind of exercise or equipment, if you are ever in doubt about using it, reach out to a professional or a personal trainer to help you along the way. It is always advisable to put your pride aside and ask someone to show you how to use equipment or do an exercise.
The same goes for if you join a class, let your instructor know you are new to the sport and need a little extra guidance. It is essential to have good communication with your instructors and your abilities.
#5 – Comfort is King
Getting the right gear is best for your health. Exercising in the wrong shoes or an uncomfortable outfit is vital for your safety. Workout gear should be appropriate; you wouldn’t work out in a long flowing dress or lose pantaloons. The correct type of shoes is vital to keeping your feet injury-free.
If you are a runner, consider getting shoes that help with impact and shock absorption. Strength trainers and weight lifters can opt for something a little more casual with a decent grip. Poorly fitting shoes can lead to toenail damage, ingrown toenails, calluses, and bunions.
#6 – Proper Form
Proper form when performing any physical activity is one of the best safety tips for staying injury-free. Proper form helps you get the best out of an exercise while performing it in the safest way possible. Think of it as following a recipe for a cake; you should follow each instruction properly without fail; that way, you get a perfect result each time.
#7 – Give it a Skip if You’re Sick
Exercising while you feel under the weather is not only silly; it is dangerous. Too much strain on your heart and system while trying to recover will set you back and make you even sicker. Stick to recovering fully before working out and placing pressure on your heart.
A compromised immune system will also be weakened by inflamed muscles and recovering aches and pains. Try lighter exercise that will not strain you too much, a long stroll or a short bike ride.
#8 – Don’t Forget to Breathe!
Breathing is important. Filling your lungs with oxygen-rich air while working out will stimulate muscle recovery and help you train for longer, as well as increasing your endurance power. Holding your breath and not filling your lungs with quality air can prevent your body from delivering oxygenated blood to your muscles when they need it most.