How to Exercise Safely

Here are some exercise safety tips before you begin workout:

Here are some exercise safety tips before you begin to workout:

Tip No. 1: Warm Up, Cool Down
You need to prepare your body for exercise by going through a warm-up period. Performing 5 to 10 minutes of low-level aerobic activity will get your blood flowing faster, increase the temperature of your muscles, and make you breathe faster. All of which help your body adjust to the demands you will be placing on it during exercise.

Tip No. 2: Stretch
Stretching before you move into the intense portion of your workout will help you get the most out of your fitness routine and stay flexible in general. Just remember that stretching follows your warm-up or you can injure yourself if you try stretching cold muscles.

Tip No 3: Get the Right Gear
You don’t have to buy expensive exercise apparel to work out, but you should have the right gear or equipment for the activity you’ve chosen, both for your comfort and safety. Consult a fitness expert or trainer for specifics, but in general, here’s what you’ll need:

Tip No. 4: Add Variety
Overuse injuries can occur when you do the same type of exercise over and over again. For example, swimmers place a lot of repetitive strain on their shoulders, while runners pound away at their knees, ankles, and feet. Another negative of “too much of a good thing”: Your body will adapt if you do only one type of exercise, and you will find yourself getting less benefit from it. The best exercise programs involve a mix of aerobic activity and strength training, along with stretching.

Tip No. 5: Hydrate
Make sure you’re replacing the fluids you are losing through sweat. If you don’t, you could end up dehydrated or with heat exhaustion. A good rule of thumb is to drink 2 cups (16 ounces) of water about 15 minutes prior to your exercise program and another 16 ounces after you cool down. Be sure to drink during exercise, too — a quick sip every 15 to 20 minutes will help you stay hydrated.

Tip No. 6: Listen to Your Body
It’s normal for your muscles to feel sore for a couple of hours after a good workout. But if you have pain that occurs during your workout or immediately afterward, consult your doctor. The same goes for muscle soreness that persists for more than a week or two. And while it’s good to be dedicated to your exercise program, don’t work out when you’re not feeling well or are extremely tired. Remember that if you exercise smart and gradually increase the length and intensity of your workouts, you’ll stay in the game, stay challenged, and stay safe.

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Fitness Tips

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