Reply To: Warm up


Great feedback Jason!  Pleased to see that someone warms up for workouts and races 🙂

Typically what is recommend for a warmup pre-race is often similar (but can be more comprehensive) than what you want to do before a workout.  Instead of thinking of the exact specifics of what you do versus what someone else does, what I would like to challenge you to do is consider the ‘purpose’ of a good warm up.  So what is the purpose of a pre-race warm up?

  • Get the blood flowing (circulation) to working muscles
  • Warm up/strength your muscles for work
  • Increase your body temperature and heart rate
  • Loosen up joints
  • Etc.

How do you achieve this?

  • Easy Jog – Like Jason, an easy jog is a great way to get started.  You want to do a jog long enough that you start to feel a light sweat.
  • Dynamic Exercises – Dynamic exercises are always recommended (versus stretching) to engage the neuromuscular system.  Dynamic exercises include high knees, butt kicks, grapevines, walking lunges (squeezing your gluts), etc.  Advanced Kinetics put up a slide of ~10 dynamic exercises that they recommend before all workouts/races and walked everyone through a demonstration on how to properly do them.  As they mentioned, the whole point here is to warm up not only the muscles but also engage your whole neuromuscular (brain, nerves, etc) system to optimize performance and minimize injury
  • Easy spin or swim – Again, like Jason, you can get in the water and just get a feel for the water.  Or an easy spin (if you have access to your bike).  Throw in some short but fast surges to prime your high end threshold system.

Again, the whole point to warming up is to be ready to work and to make sure your HR does NOT spike.  If your HR spikes, unless you actively work to bring it back down, it will stay high.  If you burn all of your matches early on, your body has no choice but to slow down later in the race.

Great question Flo!  Hopefully you are better prepared to race now!