It’s true, we are most likely skipping our warm up due to the mindset of “I don’t have time, I need to get in and out”, or “I don’t need a warm up, I feel fine” – says gym goers everywhere. Truly, I can take into consideration that both of these reasons are valid and hold some weight in a debate but if we are being totally honest with ourselves, then we both know that these excuses can only be used so many times before they are ONLY excuses instead of actual reasons.
As a personal trainer, it took me a long time to get into the habit myself to start with a dynamic warm up — as a matter of fact, my warm up in the beginning was much like most people; walk on the treadmill for 5 minutes at a slow speed. I can’t complain because at least some people are “trying” and I was thinking that I was also “trying” at the time but little did I know that 5 minutes on a treadmill at a slow speed would not be a warm up that serves a decent purpose for a workout (especially my workout routine). There is so much more to warming up.
A warm up should feed the purpose of your workout — it should replicate or work the muscle groups being used in your actual workout. i.e for example: if you plan on doing squats and deadlifts; then your workout should warm up your quads, hamstrings, glutes and lower back so that when you are ready to perform the exercises, you are doing them while blood flow is working its way through you vs while being cold/stiff.
A warm up doesn’t need to be LONG, I’d say 8-10 minutes at the very least. Mine take 12-15 minutes typically.
Warm up should be dynamic in the beginning of the workout vs static. Leg swings, bicep curls, band pull aparts, bodyweight squats, inchworms, etc are all dynamic exercises vs sitting down to a hamstring stretch.
Warm up should get your HR up. NOT to the point where you are too fatigued to do your workout.
Next time you are at the gym or beginning an at home session, take a few minutes to warm up, your body will appreciate it more and your performance might be better off in the long scheme of things.