Warming up and Warming down

16 Sep

Someone asked about pre-run warming up and what I do. Its a good question and a very important one! Why? Well if you don’t warm up and also ‘warm down’ (cool down) you are just asking for injury and morning after stiff legs.

A good warm up and stretch routine will increase your muscle temperature for optimla efficiency and flexibility. It also dilates blood vessels and ensures that muscles are well topped up with oxygen with a good blood flow. A warm up will allow your heart to slowly increase its rate and reduces sudden stress and prepares it and your body for excercise.

Most people forget that you should also cooldown after an actitivy. This is also important as if you suddenly stop exercise your heart rate and blood pressure will quickly drop. This can cause dizziness, so winding down allows your body to return to ‘normal’ in a more controlled manor. It can also prevent the ‘pooling’ of bloody in your legs and helps keep the blood moving to remove lactic acid build up. Ultimately all this helps to relax your body, eases, stretches and relaxes your muscles  and helps stop you feeling as stiff and sore the next day.

So what warm ups  and cool down exercise should you do?

To be honest everyone does something a little different and there is plenty of advice on the internet, just do a quick Google search on something like ‘Running warm up exercises’. YouTube is also another great resource for researching warm ups and cool down exercise as there are plenty of videos on how to do them, rather than trying to figure it out from some written instructions. And not forgetting the Runners World forums, where the exact same ‘Warm up’ and ‘Cool Down’ questions have been asked before with lots of great answers.


One Response to “Warming up and Warming down”


  1. Falling behind on blog posts, running and not 100% again. « ScribsBlog - November 7, 2011

    […] my left knee and I soon ‘fixed’ it by including a few new (at the time) stretches to my warm up/warm down routine and reverting to a previous pair of trainers. This time its in my right knee and I’m sure its […]

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