STOP Forgetting To Do This + Why It May Be Causing You A Lot Of Harm

Today's topic is all about something I'm sure you often forget to do...STRETCH. Yep. I even took a survey on Twitter and asked people how often they remembered and most of them either forget to altogether or did it every now and then. Which is a HUGE no-no.

A lot of us have no idea why stretching after every workout is crucial to our well-being, so it's no wonder we never make it a priority. So today, you're gonna learn. And hopefully, you'll make a more informed decision before you leave the gym right after working out. 

 

Benefits of Stretching:

1. It keeps the muscles flexible, strong, and healthy, and we need that flexibility to maintain a range of motion in the joints. If we fail to stretch our muscles and joints begin to tighten up. That leaves us with a very limited range of motion, meaning doing everyday activities becomes a hassle. 

2. Ever feel super sore after your workouts? Taking 5-10 mins after your workout can decrease your chances of feeling achy. When we work out lactic acid begins to build up in your body which often leads to fatigue and soreness. By stretching after each workout it increases the flow of blood through your body, limiting your chances of next day soreness.

3. Stretching will help you achieve better form in your workouts. Because of your increased range of motion and flexibility, you'll be able to get better results from each exercise and really reap the benefits.  

4. Stretch more, stress less. When we stretch regularly we release the tension within our muscles, which sends signals to our brain to become more relaxed. 

No worries, you don't have to stretch like an Olympic athlete. But you might be wondering what types of stretching you should be doing. They don't need to be complicated and they SHOULD NEVER be painful. Here are some tips, PLUS a how-to of some of my favorite stretches for you to try. 

Tips:

  • Take it slow. Don't rush into your stretch, take your time. 
  • Make sure to breathe. Breathing helps you get deeper into the stretch and really reap the benefits. 
  • Hold each move for 30-90 secs. 
  • If it hurts, stop immediately. You don't want to risk pulling or straining anything. 

The Takeaway:

So before you leave the gym or even finish your Zumba class, try taking 5-10 minutes to let your body cool down and get a couple of stretches in. Your body will thank you now and most definitely thank you in 30 years when you can walk up a flight of stairs without pulling a muscle. 
I hope you enjoyed today's topic. Are you someone who doesn't give stretching a second thought? Or do you consider yourself a stretching enthusiast? Leave a comment and tell me all about it. I'd love to know! 

-A