Useful Tips

Warm up before training at home.


Your well-being in the mornings and the level of energy during the day depends not only on how much you sleep, but also when you go to bed and wake up. Doctors unanimously advise owls and larks to fall asleep no later than midnight. Of course, there are exceptions to any rule: urgent work, parties, travel - all this can bring down sleep mode for a short time. But the main thing is that such a “glitch” does not drag on. The Healthy Sleep Challenge is a great opportunity to challenge yourself and see if you can change your regime, and at the same time check how much just one new habit can affect your well-being. And all these three weeks we will tell you about tricks that will help you rebuild painlessly.

Three-week challenge for those who want to give up sweets.
This is one of the most difficult marathons organized by The Challenger. Everyone who has ever tried to give up sweets knows how difficult it is. To facilitate your task, we tried to bring together all the techniques that help less painfully get rid of the habit of eating “extra” sugar.

Why do I need a warm-up before training?

A little naive question, people who know a lot, they are not asked. Because it is obvious - if you do not want to get injured out of the blue, warm up. You can run all your life, run kilometers a day, even without warming up, however, on one, far from perfect day, your luck can change you, and one unsuccessful movement will lead to injury - some kind of muscle hernia, or stretching. And this means that you, at best, will spend several months recovering, or you will be forced to completely abandon your favorite exercises.

Preparation for training will not take much of your time, it’s enough to take only 15-20 minutes, but you can thus not only reduce the risk of accidental injury to almost zero, but also tone your muscles, thereby increasing the effectiveness of the exercises and personal results achieved.

How to warm up?

Warm up should start from the bottom - from the feet, and finish at the very top - the cervical spine, all joints and muscles should be included in the work. Be sure to stretch all the muscles, even those that you are not going to train.

Stand up straight, flex your feet, calf muscles, knees, hips, and pelvic area. Stretch - lunges and sipping, then go higher - to the lower back. Make a few bends to the sides, stretch, bend, reaching for the socks. This is followed by the pectoral muscles and shoulders. Here you will come to the aid of circular movements of the shoulders and swings of hands. These simple movements will prepare the muscles for the upcoming loads. After the shoulders, go to the hands, knead everything from the fingers to the shoulders. Make circular motions with your hands and don't forget about your elbows. Completes preparation cervical spine - slow circular movements clockwise and counterclockwise and tilting the head will tone the neck muscles.

After completion, do not rush to grab the maximum weights and take the maximum pace, do not rush off the bat, because in this case no warm-up will help you - remember load should increase sequentially, and this is necessary not only for security purposes, but also to obtain the maximum effect from the exercise.

Warming up the entire articular ligamentous apparatus

If you go to the gym after work or study, in no case do not ignore the warm-up. During the day, you most likely had little physical activity. During this time, all the ligaments managed to lose their elasticity, they are literally stretched like ropes. If they are not properly warmed up, the risk of sprains or tears of the ligaments increases.

Same thing with joints. The task of any joint gymnastics or light weight training with light weights is to increase the synthesis of joint lubrication. If you do not, in the long run you will increase the likelihood of developing arthritis or arthrosis.

Preparing the cardiovascular system for exercise

The heart is the most important muscle in the body of any athlete. Without a healthy heart, not only progress in sports is impossible, but also an active lifestyle in general. At rest, the heart rate in an adult is 60-80 beats per minute. With active load, it increases to 140-170 strokes.

If you avoid warming up, your heart seems to skip from the first car gear to the fifth right away. This leads to hypertrophy of the heart muscle. In the medical environment, this is called "sports heart syndrome." Sometimes this goes without consequences, but is often accompanied by arrhythmia, tachycardia and hypertension. The heart rate should increase sequentially, which is why proper warm-up before training is important.

Muscle warming

Fitness, crossfit or bodybuilding is impossible without neuromuscular communication. 10 minutes of warm-up will help you feel how your muscle fibers are stretched and contracted. Then the training will be more productive: you will feel the work of the muscles, and not the joints and ligaments. Without this, a complete set of muscle mass is impossible.

In addition, you reduce the likelihood of injury. In professional power sports, tearing or breaking is quite common. The most common reason is the lack of a warm-up. This happens because unstretched and “cold” muscles are more prone to cramps and spasms. When an athlete tries to take weight without warming up, muscle fibers are stretched or torn. Most often this happens with the pectoral muscles and the inner thigh.

Mental preparation

Psychology in sports is an essential part of the training and competition process. Do you have a plan for a deadlift or bench press record? Installing it (and just working with heavy weights) will be almost impossible, and even extremely traumatic without performing warm-up approaches. After a light cardio and joint warm-up, take an empty bar and start doing the exercise with it. Each rep should be slow and controlled - constantly feel the muscles work. Gradually increase weights. So you are mentally tuned to your maximum result.

Smooth increase in body temperature

During intense sports, your body temperature rises. This is an absolutely natural process. The task of the warm-up is to start the processes of thermoregulation, then you will be comfortable training, and your health will not worsen. Warm up to the appearance of light perspiration on the forehead, this is a kind of indicator that your body is ready for exercise.

What is the danger of lack of warm-up?

Ignoring the warm-up will increase the likelihood of injury. In power sports, this causes at least half the damage. The most common problem for athletes of any skill level is sprain. This injury haunts athletes from many sports: crossfit, powerlifting, martial arts, football, etc. During the warm-up, your ligaments become more elastic and better absorb the load.

Joint injuries are slightly less common. Most goes to the knees, elbows, hands and shoulder joints. Spending 10 minutes on rotational gymnastics, performing auxiliary exercises with minimal weight, stretching and a couple of warm-up approaches with an empty bar or light dumbbells, you will reduce the risk of injury to almost zero.

Any injuries are always a halt to progress, a break in training up to several months and a rollback of available results. One wrong action or careless movement can knock out of the usual rut for six months.

In the long run, the absence of a warm-up negatively affects the health of your cardiovascular system. The heart is also a muscle, and it needs to be trained. Only you need to do this smoothly and gradually, so an easy cardio-warm-up is an integral part of any well-designed training program.

Workout structure before training in the gym

First, do a little joint gymnastics. It does not take much time. Perform rotational movements, turns in different directions and similar movements. We recommend starting from top to bottom and warming up in approximately the following order:

  • cervical spine,
  • shoulder joints
  • thoracic spine,
  • elbow joint and hands
  • lumbar spine,
  • knees,
  • ankle and calves.

Pick one or two movements that you are comfortable with. Perform 20-30 repetitions of each of them. This will warm the joints and ligaments and protect them from damage while doing more difficult work. Keep to an average pace; there should not be any sharp and jerky movements. Estimated time to complete the joint gymnastics complex: 3-5 minutes.

As a next step, we recommend a small stretching complex. We need to statically stretch each muscle group. This mobilizes muscle tissue, stretches the fascia and stimulates the flow of blood and oxygen to the cells. Long stretch is not necessary, it is enough to linger at the maximum tension point for about 15 seconds.

Start by the same principle - from top to bottom. Pay special attention to the pectoral muscles, latissimus dorsi, extensors of the spine, hip biceps and adductors of the thigh. So you prepare the muscles for power load, protect yourself from injuries and you will feel better contraction and stretching of muscles in each repetition.

For stretching all the muscles of the back, a normal vis on the bar is suitable. The pectoral muscles are most comfortable to stretch, leaning with one hand on the squats and leaning forward with the whole body. To stretch the lower back and back of the thigh, use hyperextension and forward bends on straight legs. Estimated time to complete the stretch complex: 3 minutes.

The next step is to perform a light cardio load. Your task is to prepare the cardiovascular system for the load. Do light aerobic exercise with a heart rate of up to 130 beats per minute. This is the average heart rate at which the processes of lipolysis (oxidation of adipose tissue) are started. Ideal for these purposes, walking on a treadmill, exercise bike, stepper or ellipse. When you feel that your body temperature has increased slightly, you can finish. Five minutes should be enough to warm up properly.

Warm clothes help to warm up well. Warm up, wearing a sweatshirt, and in the process of training remove. So your body temperature rises faster, and you save a little time.

Weightless Exercise

The final stage of the warm-up before training in the gym will be the performance of crossfit strength exercises with a small burden. They will help to properly feel the work of muscles and improve blood circulation in them. It turns out a slight variation of pre-fatigue.

Pay special attention to exercises for those muscle groups that you are training today. Shoulder Day? Perform 3 sets of moves to the sides and in front of you with the lightest dumbbells that only exist in your gym. Is there a heavy squat ahead? Do three sets of squats with your own weight. Estimated time to complete the complex: 5-7 minutes. Relax for a couple of minutes and start the main training.

We gave an approximate warm-up complex for the whole body before training in the gym. If you are limited in time, one or two stages can be removed from it - this is not critical.

Home Warming Up Complex

Warming up before training at home will be a little different. You can remove the cardio load from it, since any home workouts do not imply such intensity as occupations in the gym, and only slightly increase the heart rate. However, you can safely replace walking on a treadmill with running in place or with a couple of rounds of “shadow boxing” (an imitation of boxing sparring with an imaginary opponent). This will only benefit. Cardio can be replaced with exercises for warming up for the whole body, for example, Jumping Jack (jumping with simultaneous clap above the head) or squats with a ball to the wall.

If time is short, do a short warm-up before training - limit yourself to joint gymnastics and stretching. These are the two most important components. However, be sure to gradually increase the working weights in the basic movements, otherwise you risk getting injured.

An important principle of warming up is not to overdo it. You should not feel tired: on the contrary, proper warm-up adds strength and vitality.

The more experience, the longer the warm-up should be. Your muscles are stronger than beginners, you work with large weights and exercise more intensively. Therefore, it takes more time to tone all body systems. Do not be lazy: your sports longevity and progress largely depend on the warm-up.

There are no fundamental differences between a warm-up before training for men and girls. However, in most cases, men need more time, as their workouts are more intense.

Pre-workout exercises

The first stage of the warm-up is to tone all joints and ligaments. There is nothing complicated: perform rotational movements, turns and inclinations in each direction. Start from the neck and go down all the way to the ankle joint. 20-30 reps will be enough. Kneading neck, it is better to do without rotational movements. The cervical spine is the most fragile, and any sudden movement is fraught with potential danger. Pay special attention to warming up the rotator cuff of the shoulder joint. Perform swing movements in different planes: to the sides, up, back, etc. The more there are, the better. The main thing - do not rush and do not make sudden movements.

With the complex stretch marks is also simple. It is not only about twine, it is possible and necessary to stretch every muscle group. The benefits of stretching are huge, this is an obligatory part of the training process for athletes from any discipline. The main principle of proper stretching: you should feel muscle tension, not pain. There should not be any discomfort.

Then we begin to perform a cardio load. Warm up a bit and move on to strength exercises. Here our task is to isolate working muscle groups as much as possible and to load them. That is why isolated exercises are suitable for a general warm-up, and not, for example, deadlift.

Muscle groupWarm up exercisesNumber of sets and reps
NeckFlexion of the neck lying with a disc on the forehead or neck2 x 20
ShouldersMachs with dumbbells to the side or standing in front of you

Wide grip barbell pull

2 x 25
ChestCrossover hands


3 x 20
BackWide grip pull-ups

Wide grip upper link


2 x 15
HandsExtension of arms from the upper block with a rope handle

Biceps lift from the lower block with the EZ handle

3 x 20
PressTwisting while sitting in the simulator2 x 25
LegsLeg extension sitting in the simulator

Bending the legs while sitting in the simulator

Legs sitting in the simulator

Bodyweight Squats

3 x 20

All exercises are performed with minimal weight. You do not have the goal of maximally kicking muscles with blood and achieving failure, you just need to "wake up" your body and prepare it for a heavier load.

Do I need a warm-up before a cardio workout?

The answer is obvious: needed. Before any more or less intense load, it is necessary to mobilize all body systems. Before running, cycling, an ellipse, or other type of aerobic exercise, pay special attention to warming up your hip, knee, and ankle joints. Do not be too lazy to spend 5-10 minutes on it. 20 rotational movements of each foot in a circle, 30 squats with its own weight and a couple of approaches of bending in front of you - this will be quite enough. Do not forget to properly stretch the quadriceps, the inner and back surfaces of the thigh.

The first few minutes of cardio are also part of the workout. Start at a slow pace: just step a little at an accelerated pace or pedal halfway. When you feel that your knees and hips are ready for more intense exercise, gradually increase the speed.

Why do I need a warm-up?

So. Very simple, her main task is to prepare your muscles, joints and ligaments with tendons for a serious, heavy load.

If your muscles are not warmed up (“cold”), then you can get severe trauma, and also you will not be able to give all your best in a working approach.

Why doesn’t work? Our body is so arranged that it will not allow you to immediately take the working weight with the necessary effort from the first approach. This is necessary in order to protect your muscles, as well as ligaments from injuries. The body puts a fuse.

When you warm up, the temperature of your muscles increases. Так же она повышается и в других тканях организма. В мышцы начинают поступать питательные вещества. Кровь начинает бежать быстрее и циркулировать по организму, подготавливая ваше тело к предстоящей нагрузке.

Разогретые мышцы, более эластичны, гибки, а суставы лучше смазаны. All this protects you from injuries.

Your brain prepares for the impending load in the same way. Constantly repeated actions before each workout cause the secretion of anabolic hormones in the body (protective reaction), which helps to achieve much greater results.

Types of bodybuilding workouts

There are only two types of workout in bodybuilding:

  1. Before starting a workout (general warm-up): rotation of the joints, stretching. running, swinging, exercise bike, etc.
  2. Before the start of the exercise (special warm-up): It is carried out immediately before the exercise and is usually a couple of approaches with a weight less than the worker. It happens that a special warm-up is performed in the form of a “direct pyramid", gradually increasing weights, approaching the workers.

How to warm up before training

Before training, give yourself 10-15 minutes of time. It’s not difficult, but it’s mega-useful!

I warm up like this:

  1. I start from above. I nod my head in different directions to stretch the neck and top of the trapezoid. Also at this time I twist brushes.
  2. Then the shoulder girdle. Twist the shoulder joints in both directions (not too intense).
  3. Then twist your elbow joints.
  4. Now stretch the deltas (shoulders). Take your hand to the side parallel to the floor (right hand to the left, for example) and with your other hand holding the elbow, try to move your hand even further. You will feel the tension of the deltas. This is good, go on. Just do not overdo it.
  5. Now raise your hand up, and with your other hand holding the elbow, take it even further, back, to stretch the triceps.
  6. Lumbar kneading by rotation of the pelvis. Then, tilting in three directions, trying to reach his socks with his hands.
  7. Then sit down 20-25 times (hands behind the head).
  8. Rotate the knee joints in both directions to catch nutrients and blood in the joints, as well as provide better lubricity.
  9. Rotate the ankles with your feet on your toe.

This complex, I think, is quite enough before training.

It is preferable to complete the warm-up with stretching exercises (not too intense). After the preliminary warm-up, stretching you will go much faster and easier.

People who regularly stretch become stronger! This is shown by various studies of smart uncles in white coats. Stretching is gradually able to change the shape of your muscles, as well as some anabolic processes begin to occur in them.

Stretching, however, DOES NOT REPLACE your workouts. It should be performed after a warm-up, and not instead.

How to stretch?

The most appropriate method for muscle stretching for bodybuilders is to stretch the muscles, resting on any support or point.

Stretch until you feel a PULLING pain! It is pulling. If the pain is sharp, then change position or stop moving.

NEED TO REMEMBER: Exercises NEVER need to be done through sharp pain! The body signals you damage. It is necessary to leave the limb alone until the movements become more comfortable.

This method of muscle stretching (about support) is very convenient to use when you take a break between sets, stretching exactly the muscle that you are training!

How to understand how to stretch a muscle

I will not describe the technique itself. You yourself will easily understand it. Any muscle contracts when we perform pulling or pushing movements with weight. When the weight drops (opposite phase) - this is the phase of muscle stretching.

Just repeat this stretch phase without weight. For the chest, for example, it will be very convenient to grasp the bar with your hand and copy the movement while laying out the dumbbells. Also experiment with other muscle groups.

Stretching the muscles between sets makes the fascia more flexible.

Muscle fascia is a connective tissue membrane in which our muscle fibers are densely located. Roughly speaking, this is the SAC in which our muscles lie. The more elastic it is, the easier it is for muscles to grow. Therefore, do not forget to stretch between sets.

I hope you are imbued with the idea of ​​the importance of the warm-up process, friends, and now you understand how to warm up properly before training.

P.S. Subscribe to blog updates. Further it will only be cooler.

Regards and best wishes, Nikita Volkov!