Exercising is always a challenge, whether you are lifting weights, running on the treadmill, or playing a sport. However, the exertion should be purely cardiovascular. Muscle and joint pains while exercising are a sign that you are doing something wrong. Here are four tips that will ensure you enjoy a pain free work out.
1. Dynamic Warm Ups
One of the best ways to prepare your muscles for a pending workout is to perform a dynamic warm up. Instead of standing and stretching for a few minutes, try walking around and loosening your muscles for a minute or two. Then complete a few sets of walking lunges, knee to the chest, high kicks, and jump squats. Jog from one end to another until you feel completely loose, and perform standing stretches to any part of your body that is sore from a previous work out.
2. Run on Different Surfaces
Many people believe that running on treadmills causes knee pain over time. However, the problem is not exclusively with treadmills. A study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine concluded that runners should alternate between pavement, grass and tracks/treadmills when they are exercising. If you are on the treadmill on Mondays, go for a run in the park on Wednesdays and around your neighborhood on Fridays. Each surface works your joints and muscles in different ways, and the constant changes ensures that any strain is balanced out.
Also, going to see a podiatrist can actually help a lot in terms of pain while working out. Your feet may be causing some of the pain problems. If you think you need some help in that area, go see a podiatrist at Dalhousie Station Foot Clinic to get yourself checked out.
3. Slowly Increase Workout Intensity
The number one cause of sore muscles is overdoing things at the gym or while playing sports. If you have not exercised for months, going to the gym and lifting weights for two hours is a terrible idea. You might feel great while completing the work out, but your muscles will be incredibly sore for days.
Slowly build up your activity levels so that your body has time to adjust to these changes. This will drastically reduce any muscle pain you feel during and after exercising.
4. Avoid Eccentric Exercising
Not many people are aware of the negative impact that eccentric exercises can have on your muscles. Two examples of eccentric exercises would be running downhill in a steep area and extending your arm while completing a bicep curl. These exercises will lengthen a specific muscle instead of shortening it, leading to uncomfortable soreness for a few days.
Working out does not have to be a torturous experience. If you are smart about your warm up routine, the amount of exercise you complete in a day, and the types of exercises you perform, there is no reason why you cannot workout a few times a week and experience no muscle or joint pain.