Whether your New Year’s resolution is to hit the gym more often, drink more water, start a new sport, or just be healthier this year, it is important to slowly ease into it to avoid draining your body or causing any injuries.
Set up a plan
Whatever your goal may be this new year, the key is to have a well thought out plan. For example, if your goal is to “eat healthier,” you’ll need to have a plan for achieving that goal. This may mean taking the time to meal plan before the start of the week, making sure you have nutritious snacks on hand during the day or planning to incorporate more vegetables into your dinners. You may also want to reach out to a professional to learn what is best for your body and how you can better reach your goals.
Another popular goal is to be more active or get fit. If you are looking to go the gym in more this year, having a weekly workout plan for yourself, going with a friend or reaching out to a personal trainer may be what you need.
Regardless of your goal, make sure you take the time to make a plan to get there.
Take it slow
It takes a while to get into a routine. According to research on average, it takes 66 days, or 2 months to develop a habit. It is important to start slow, and allow your body and mind to adjust to the new habits you are trying to develop. Working to build your habits with small steps over time will often lead to better results than starting with a more drastic change.
Taking it slow is especially important when it comes to physical activity. If you are looking to get in more exercise, to avoid future injuries give your body time to progress physically, give it time for proper recovery, and listen to your body while exercising. If something does not feel right, that may be your body telling you to slow down and rest for a while.
It is critical that as you are slowly easing yourself back into exercising that you also focus on injury prevention. Working out with tight muscles can easily lead to injuries. Therefore ensure that you warm up before exercising. Before a workout, a dynamic warm-up is recommended to allow for better performance. Its goal is to increase body temperature, heart rate, oxygen levels and blood flow. This helps make the muscles more elastic and pliable, therefore making them more resistant to injury. Take the time to stretch after your workout as well as it can help reduce the buildup of lactic acid through the body and helps relax tensed up muscles.
If you start to notice that something is not feeling right, don’t push through in hopes that it will resolve on its own. Take the time to see a physiotherapist so that they can develop a treatment plan customized with your goals and long-term health in mind.
If you encounter any injuries, our physiotherapists would love to help you out. Book an appointment and let us help you recover at South Edmonton Physio.