When it comes to warm-up, we tend to skip it as we are not aware of the benefits that it has. Performing warm-up exercises before running will not only keep injuries away but will also activate your body to go through any sought rigorous jerks, that might happen during running. Before starting any sports or exercises, it is highly recommended that an individual should perform warm up strictly to evade any possible injuries.

In our series of articles catered to warm-up exercises, we have come up with another segment, where we will figure out some of the relevant exercises that one should perform as a warm-up exercise before running. The warm-up exercises before running have been defined in stages and they should be done as it is. However, we recommend that you should consult your coach or a sports physiotherapist to have a better understanding of the warm-up exercises required for yourself.

Need for Warm-up Exercises Before Running

True to its name, warmups before any sport or workout raise the temperature of your muscles by gradually increasing blood flow to them. In turn, those muscles become springier and every runner can benefit from a healthy spring in their stride. Warmups also release special electric molecules into your muscles to more or less give them a full charge. That way, as soon as you start your workout, your muscles are already poised to do their best work. However, by taking your hips, knees, and ankles through their full range of motion, pre-run warmups lubricate your joints and make your connective tissues like ligaments and tendons more pliable. In nutshell, what we can take from warm-ups is that every run becomes easier, more comfortable, and comes with a lower risk of injury. In addition, by helping you run a bit faster and longer without actually working any harder, warming up lets you get more out of every run.

Benefits of Warm-Up Exercises Before Running

  • Increases Body and Muscle Temperature – A good warm-up will raise your body temperature, which is particularly helpful to your muscles. As your muscle temperature increases, oxygen becomes more available to your muscles, allowing them to contract and relax more easily. In this case, you will be able to perform more strenuous tasks with ease. Your heart is also given a chance to prepare, meaning it won’t be too strained during your workout.
  • Reduces Chances of Injury – Warming up will improve muscle elasticity and allow for efficient cooling, meaning less chance of accidentally hurting yourself or overheating during your workout and ruining your day.
  • Offers Mental Preparation – Jumping straight into any sport without being adequately prepared can throw you off completely, especially if the preparation is mental rather than physical. It’s easy to give up when working out gets difficult, but you will be much less likely to do so if you have given yourself time to remember why you are working out. Use your time warming up to think about what you are about to do, guaranteeing that both your body and mind will be ready to succeed.
  • Increases Flexibility – Stretching is often considered something that should be done in addition to regular warm-ups. Stretching will increase blood flow to your muscles, and allow your body to increase its flexibility in both the short and long term. Stretch after you have already completed your warm-up, as stretching when your muscles aren’t properly warm can lead to injury.

Best Warm-up Exercises Before Running

1.) Dead Bug – Dead bug is one of the best warm-up exercises before running. Performing this exercise will wake up your muscles to run with a strong, healthy posture. It will boost your speed, lighten the load on your lower back, and help keep your lower body happy. This exercise gets your core warmed up while prepping your opposite arm and leg swings.

Steps To Perform
  • Lie face-up on the floor with your arms and legs in the air. You can bend your knees if it feels best.
  • Press your lower back against the floor. You should feel your core working. Keep this back position throughout the entire exercise.
  • Extend one leg in front of you and the opposite arm behind you toward the floor as far as is comfortable while keeping your lower back against the floor.
  • Pause, then squeeze your core to raise your arm and leg back toward the ceiling.
  • Repeat with the opposite arm and leg. That’s one rep.

2.) Side Squat – Side squat is one of the best warm-up exercises before running. Sideways movements that work your side glutes play a huge role in keeping your hips, knees, and even ankles happy. This multitasking exercise fires them up while also mobilizing your hips, knees, and ankles.

Steps To Perform
  • Stand tall with your feet about double shoulder-width apart.
  • Brace your core to slightly tuck your tailbone and make sure you’re not arching through your lower back.
  • Push your hips back behind you and bend one knee to lower your torso to that side as far as is comfortable or until your thigh is parallel with the floor.
  • Pause, then slowly push through the heel of your bent leg to return to the wide stance. (Your feet will stay in place throughout the exercise.)
  • Repeat on the opposite side. That’s one rep.

3.) Shoulder Squeeze – Shoulder Squeeze is one of the best warm-up exercises before running. Your upper back muscles play a surprisingly large role in running. They keep your arms swinging and your shoulders braced. Most importantly, they keep your breathing easier. You know how when you feel out of breath, you naturally want to rest your arms over your head to get in more air? Keeping those upper-back muscles engaged does the same thing, giving your lungs space to bring in more air with every breath.

Steps To Perform
  • Stand with your feet together, elbows bent, and hands by your shoulders (like you’re about to do the chicken dance). Brace your core.
  • Resisting the urge to arch through your back or rock your torso, squeeze your shoulder blades down and together as hard as you can. You should feel your muscles working and being stretched at the same time.
  • Hold the squeeze for a couple of seconds, then release. That’s one rep.

4.) Reverse Lunge with Overhead Reach – This is a dynamic warm-up workout, as it gets your quads, glutes, and hamstrings working together, opens up your chest, and provides a gentle stretch for your hip flexors

Steps To Perform
  • Stand tall with your feet about hip-width apart and your arms at your sides. Brace your core.
  • Without arching through your lower back, step one foot behind you and lower into a lunge. Don’t cock your hips make sure the front of both hips faces forward. You should feel a stretch in your back leg’s hip.
  • At the same time, scoop your arms in front of you, then up toward the ceiling.
  • Pause, then press through your front heel to step your back foot forward. Lower your arms.
  • Repeat on the opposite side. That’s one rep.

5.) Forward Leg Swing – This warm-up works your hip through its entire range of motion, both forward and back. It’s a great way for loosening up the single-largest joint in your entire body.

Steps To Perform
  • Stand with your feet together beside a sturdy object. Place one hand on it for balance. Raise one foot just off of the floor.
  • Keeping your core braced and moving with control, swing your leg straight out in front of you, then back behind you as far as is comfortable.
  • That’s one rep. Do all reps and then switch legs.

6.) Sideways Leg Swing – This dynamic warm-up activates and stretches your inner and outer thighs. You might also feel the side glutes of your standing leg working to keep you balanced.

Steps To Perform
  • Stand with your feet together and face a sturdy object. Place one or both hands on it for balance. Raise one foot just off of the floor.
  • Keeping your core braced and moving with control, swing your leg straight out to your side, then in front of your body as far as is comfortable.
  • That’s one rep. Do all reps and then switch legs.

Disclaimer:

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as a health advice. We would ask you to consult a qualified professional or medical expert to gain additional knowledge before you choose to consume any product or perform any exercise.

Author

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