GymBug

I've caught it. Fortunately, it's not treatable.

Archive for the tag “saturday”

Stretching your way to fitness

Hi there!

Today’s post is going to focus on stretching and the importance of it. I used to never stretch and the severity of this wsa revealed to me when I got injured with a grade 2 groin strain in January. It saw me out of rowing for the semester and out of cardio for weeks. It was painful and incredibly frustrating. Since then, I’ve ensured I fit in a stretching session after every single workout. I’ve noticed it’s helped my recovery and it feels good being able to touch the ground without feeling like something is going to snap.

Again, this information has been collected from research I’ve done and things I’ve stumbled across on Pinterest, Twitter etc.

  • Stretching helps your range of motion. It reduces muscle tenion and tightness, two things which reduce muscle function.
  • It can improve posture. Tight muscles will pull your body out of shape. For example, tight chest mucles pull out shoulders and head forward which gives us a hunched look. By stretching your muscles your releasing the tension and allowing your body to move more freely and allows you to have better posture.
  • It can help your calm down. Stretching is good for relaxation and the release of tension can be both physical and mental when stretching. When stretching practice deep breathing and clearing the mind. It’s amazing how relaxing it can be.

Something that surprised me was the complex lack of consensus regarding stretching and injury prevention. Some sources say it doesn’t do a thing to prevent injury, for example, Jillian Michaels whilst other argue differently, such as the article in Lifehacker. I believe it has benefits of reducing muscle tension, which allows increased range of motion which may prevent you overstretching it doing simple tasks. So I think it can indirectly help.

When stretching it’s important to hold it for a good 20 seconds, otherwise you won’t see benefits particularly quickly. Also focusing on the areas you worked most during that particular workout to ensure they get the best stretches.

The Mayo Clinic has a great slide show on stretching safely and gives advice on basic stretches to start incorporating into your workout. I discovered some really useful ones by attending some pilates classes also.

Have a happy Saturday everyone! Last weekend in November, almost time to get pumped for Christmas!

Gym Bug

Sources;

http://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?ContentTypeID=1&ContentID=2206

http://lifehacker.com/5983731/why-stretching-is-just-as-important-as-exercise

 

Advertisements

Gym Bug’s Simple Gym Rules

Hi there!

This post might come across as slightly “rant-like” in nature. It’s not my intention, but it could happen. Anyway, it has to do with gym manners and how to behave in a gym. I’ve noticed my expectations and my behaviours sometmes vary differently to others (as with all situations in life). But I thought I would give a run down of how I act and would like others to act towards me in a gym. I’m really interested in people’s opinions so leave a comment/tweet if you have any points to make!

The thing that gets me the most in the gym is when there is a whole line of machines available to use and someone strides along and uses the one right next to you. It’s a little creepy and very annoying. This happened to me the other day. I was using 1 of 10 treadmills and instead of selecting any of the 8 not next to me (I was at the wall) he went right next to me. It’s honestly incredibly off-putting and unnecessary. Also, if you do decide to break this rule, don’t make it worse by streching in the tiny space between my machine and yours (someone did this to me on the bike). So;
Gym Bug Rule #1 ; give a gym goer some space (if possible).

Something else that’s unnecessary? Staring. Yes, I’m dripping in sweat, very red faced, doing some strange stretches/abdominal exercises and pounding on the treadmill (HIIT), you’re allowed the occassional glance to work out what the hell I’m doing. But continuous staring? Especially when I make blatant eye contact? No.
Gym Bug Rules #2; stop staring, it’s damn creepy.

A point on cleanliness. At my gym, there is a clear sign asking you to clean machines with some paper towels and a cleaning spray (that smells very pleasant). It’s a matter of hygiene and politeness. If you’ve dripped/drooled/spat all over a machine, don’t leave it for the next gym goer to deal with. It’s uncomfortable and a little it gag-reflex triggering. Also, a towel can be handy to have to mop up drips off your head and body during cardio, this make clean up easier too! Towel during weights also means you can sit on it, preventing sweat transferring to the seats.
Gym Bug Rules #3; cleanliness is next to godliness, wipe machines after use.

Huffing and puffing. I get it, lifting heavy is hard and sometimes a little squeak or puff escapes me as I’m focusing on my breathing. But excessive grunting is seriously not necessary. Shouting is major no-go for me too.
Gym Bug Rules #4; indoor voices, you are indoors afterall.

Machine usage. This is particularly about strength conditioning machines (e.g chest press, leg press, calf rotary, shoulder press) and doing it in sets. If you’re using a machine and taking breaks in between sets, it’s only fair you get up and give others the opportunity to use the machine in between. Don’t sit there staring at your shoelaces (or other gym goers, refer to 2) and hog the machine when others can use it.
Gym Bug Rules #5; sharing is caring, don’t hog.

Those really are my 5 peeves and my personal rules that I try stick to. I think it’s important to consider other gym goers. For some, it can be uncomfortable working out in front of others, there’s no need to make it worse!

But it’s a Saturday. Have a relaxing weekend, friends! Anyone like me, enjoy rest day tomorrow!

Gym Bug

Post Navigation