Tip: While the “no pain, no gain” is a fine philosophy if you are an athlete or a film star, it can hurt you if you are doing the pain-gain technique blindly.
In our enthusiasm for fitness and fine figure, we can sometimes overdo our workout regime. Haven’t you heard of a fitness enthusiast carelessly exerting or pulling a wrong muscle, tearing a ligament, injuring his shoulder, wrist or knee, sprained ankles or simply suffering an injury during physical training? Yet if attention is paid to a few aspects before getting into any regime, it will protect us from various wear and tear that happens when we are building our bodies.
Anyone can suffer a common injury during exercising irrespective of the level of fitness. Here are some dos and don’ts you may like to follow to protect yourself from the same.
As a thumb rule, if you are above the age of 50 and have not exercised in a long time, please consult your physician first before embarking on any fitness routine. Once you get his/her thumbs up, read the next point.
Eat before working out
Fuel your body at least an hour or two before hitting your gym or working out. Avoid eating anything heavy. A light meal or snack should do the trick. After having sweated it out, eat healthily (protein or carb) to replenish energy that you have used up.
Begin every exercise regime with a warm up. Don’t begin straight by getting into heavier exercises. A warm up wakes up the body, increases the heart rate and loosens the muscles and joints. In short, it gets the body ready for the drill. Doing some light but quick movements such as marching on the spot and running on the spot, skipping etc., should get you ready.
Stretch it out
Your warm ups must include stretching. S-T-R-E-T-C-H before getting into your work out level. This will also increase flexibility.
Don’t hurry, easy does it
Get into an aerobic mode of building intensity and frequency by easing into that level. If you have crossed a certain age or are not in regular touch with exercising, don’t push yourself. Try not to have a match with your younger colleagues. Remember, as your ability for fitness increases, you will get better.
Be aware of any body pain
While the “no pain, no gain” is a fine philosophy if you are an athlete or a film star, it can hurt you if you are doing the pain-gain technique blindly. A little more, say 10% more than your comfort level is all the pain you need to endure, not more than that, please. If you feel any sharp pain at any time, stop exercising gradually.
Know your trouble areas
Work on and around your trouble spots. If you have arthritis, work to build strength first. In any case, we shall advise you to talk to your physician if you are starting anew after a medical condition. Create a work out regime and get it approved from our family doctor so that you are safe.
Wear proper exercise gear
Dress right. Wear proper exercise gear for your workout. If you are getting ready for a marathon, wear a good pair of running shoes that fit and likewsie.
Get a personal trainer
There is no harm in appointing a personal trainer for a while. It will work in your favor and the results will be seen sooner. The trainer will help you to draw up a realistic fitness routine that will do you good.
Interchange your work outs
Don’t do the same exercises again and again. Interchange the workouts. This will employ all muscles groups and core areas while also prevent overuse of the same muscles due to repetition.
Sip don’t gulp water. Sip intermittently as you are losing water and electrolytes through sweat. But as we said, sip don’t guzzle down H2O.
Every work out must conclude with a cool down. It is as important as warming up. A cool-down after a heavy drill and physical activity is vital for your heart rate. Walk around, move your arms leisurely for a while and slowly bring your heart rate back to normal. Also, be open to taking a break from your regime every alternate day or so. This will help your body to rejuvenate and prevent injuries.
How to treat fitness injuries
If you do end up hurting yourself or spraining your ankle, etc. during a workout, adopt the popular ICE treatment:
I: Apply ice to the sore area to reduce inflammation and swelling.
C: This is for compression bandage to lower swelling.
E: Elevation. This works best for knee or ankle injury where you need to keep your feet raised on a pillow. Elevation also works when your legs/feet are sore due to over use.
Finally, need we say rest is important? Okay, we have to emphasize that rest is indeed extremely crucial to recovering.
If after ICE method and rest you are still in pain due to injury, see a doctor. It may be nothing, but letting in the doctor know of a wound because of exercise and getting his medical advice will be assuring.
Curb your enthusiasm to hit the gym or exercise till you are completely fine and rearing to go. Take care of the wound and avoid applying any strain on it.
Begin slowly, sustain, build your strength and go…