When preparing for a fitness journey, we tend to plan out every aspect of the journey. We'll plan the workout time with a routine, a meal plan, and even how much water to drink. In putting this checklist together, there is another very important thing being left off which is stretching!
Stretching is a very important part of fitness and sports. It relaxes your mind and keeps your body tuned up. When done correctly, implementing stretching into your daily routine:
• reduces muscle tension which helps the body to feel relaxed,
• increases range of motion,
• helps prevent injuries such as muscle strains,
• helps maintain flexibility, and
• helps you feel good.
Stretching when not done correctly causes more harm than good. You should not feel pain with your stretch. Pain during a stretch means you are definitely doing something wrong. Taking a stretch too far can strain the muscles and cause microscopic tearing of muscle fibers. Overtime this can lead to a loss of elasticity which will leave you walking around with stiff sore muscles. Who wants that? I definitely don’t, and I know you don't either so BE CAREFUL!
I usually think about my stretches when I workout, but you don't have to limit your stretches to your workouts. If you want to get in touch with your body or just want to feel good after a long day, take in some deep breaths and get in a good stretch.