Warmin’ It Up

When it’s nice outside and there’s very little time to properly warm up, it’s difficult to go through the motions of warming up before a workout. I’m always eager to get out there and get to my run or bike or kayak. But studies have consistently shown that even moderate workouts have a positive effect on health and mentality during your workout.

As this article from Active.com explains:

There have been human studies on sudden, high-intensity exercise and the effects on the heart. One particular study had 44 men (free of overt symptoms of coronary artery disease) run on a treadmill at high intensity for 10 to 15 seconds without any warm-up. Electrocardiogram (ECG) data showed that 70 percent of the subjects displayed abnormal ECG changes that were attributed to low blood supply to the heart muscle. Yikes!

The abnormal changes were not related to age or fitness level.

To examine the benefit of a warm-up, 22 of the men with abnormal results did a jog-in-place at a moderate intensity for two minutes before getting on the treadmill for another test of high-intensity running. With that small two-minute warm-up, 10 of the men now showed normal ECG tracings and 10 showed improved tracings. Only two of the subjects still showed significant abnormalities.

It’s clear you should warm up so make sure you leave enough time for it and get outside and enjoy it so that it’s easier to become a regular part of your workout.

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