DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor, physician, or trainer, or giving medical advice. I am creating this post from my own personal experiences, and from the resource links mentioned throughout the post. Always contact your doctor or a certified trainer before you start any exercise regimen or sports activities.
First, consult your physician before you start an exercise routine
Shortly after giving birth to my first son, I joined a Jazzercise class to get back in shape. I was going to classes more than 5 days a week and also participated in a whole day marathon. Not only was I sore and exhausted, even with exercising regularly, I also developed hemorrhoids with the stress on my body.
Be sure not to overdo your workout, listen to your body and how you feel. First off, Consult a physician before you start an exercise routine. See what they advise for your age, or pre-existing conditions if you have them.
Here are some reasons why you can get injured when exercising, or how to avoid injury when possible. Whether you are a beginner, have not been actively exercising, or a seasoned exerciser, you can get injured. These are things I have learned over the years.
Set realistic goals and do exercises you enjoy
- Know what your goal is and don’t make it too big so that you lose motivation.
- Make sure you WRITE your goals down.
- Persevere and don’t give up on your goals!
- If you aren’t seeing progress re-evaluate your exercise plan and make changes to get positive results in attaining your goals.
- Start in smaller sessions and work your way up.
- Find an exercise buddy who is also dedicated to attaining a goal.
- Hire a certified trainer to help keep you motivated and on track and doing the exercises properly for your age and health.
- Make your goals personal and with purpose or you won’t attain them.
- Make a time limit with a sense of urgency. You can set a yearly goal with smaller goals and shorter time limits.
More Tips on setting realistic goals on ISSA Online
Be prepared before starting an exercise or activity
Having poor preparation can lead to problems resurfacing when a new activity is started. According to doctors, wrist tendinitis, tennis elbow, shin splints, and knee-cap injuries are some common overdoing injuries.
Learning the right way to do an exercise or sport can help prevent injury, so when in doubt turn to your physician, a certified trainer, or coach.
Be sure and take 1 to 2 days off a week to rest. Rest will give your body a chance to recover between workouts which can help prevent injuries.
If you are new to exercise, walking and swimming might be the better choice at first since they are low-intensity options.
Warm up and cool down before and after you exercise
Warm-up and cool down before and after you exercise. You can start by jumping rope or jogging in place for 5 to 10 minutes to warm up your body before you start your exercise routine.
It is not a good idea to work out with cold muscles. You should get your body core temperature up and your blood flow moving, and get mentally prepared. Then you can pick up the pace gradually.
After your exercise routine, a good way to cool down is by walking for 5 to 10 minutes to get your heart rate and body temperature back to normal.
Start slow and build up gradually
Work into a daily routine whether you work in an office or work from home. Most people start exercise routines wanting to see immediate results. Don’t get in your head thinking you can run a marathon in a week from when you start preparing, as it takes time to build up your stamina so you can run and possibly avoid getting injured.
You can create injuries to your muscles and get the opposite result you wanted. Exercise at your own pace and intensity, and you will be able to challenge yourself more as your fitness abilities increase.
Your exercise needs also vary based on your age, weight, height, and current physical health. I can’t stress enough to always check with your doctor or a certified trainer before starting or moving forward on your exercise regimen.
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Be careful when you increase the intensity of a workout
If you increase the intensity of a workout, injuries could occur such as pushing yourself too soon to run a marathon or overdoing your exercise routine. Be sure and listen to your body and if you are in pain, stop and don’t push yourself.
Here is a link from Mayo Clinic on overuse injury and how to prevent injuries.
If injured, call your doctor and see what they recommend. These could be methods that could prevent the injury from getting worse.
- rest the injury
- ice the injury
- apply a compression bandage
- elevate the injury
- what medications to take
Most doctors do telehealth calls now where they can actually talk with you and see the injury and possibly can prescribe medication from that, and let you know if you need to set an appointment for further evaluation.
Take the time they suggest to recover before you start exercising again.
Change up your routine
Change up the routine by doing different activities. Not only will this give your muscles a break from doing the same thing, your body will also benefit from changing up the routine and be better for your metabolism studies have shown.
Instead of focusing on one type of exercise, incorporate a variety of low-impact activities, such as walking, biking, and swimming which can help prevent overuse injuries, where you use different muscle groups and not overload any one group.
Wear proper workout clothes and use proper equipment
Get expert advice on what shoes you should be wearing because they can gauge what shoe fits best with your arch, gait, and body weight. Many injuries come from wearing worn-out shoes without any support.
Also, use the correct equipment made for the activity you are participating in. You should wear clothes that are loose and comfortable, but if you are doing yoga or pilates, stretchy, fitted material that absorbs sweat is a good choice.
If running or biking stay away from loose pants that you could trip over or get stuck in the petals.
Eat well-balanced meals and drink plenty of water
When you exercise and do activities you should eat carbohydrates to give you energy for your workout and protein after your workout will help repair those muscles. Experts recommend hydrating before, during, and after your workout.
You can prevent dehydration by drinking at least 2 glasses of water two hours before your workout, 1 glass of water during every half hour of exercise, and 3 glasses of water afterward.
Check with a reputable sports nutritionist to understand when, how much, and what foods you should be eating to keep you healthy and energized for your routines.
Add strength training with core exercises
Core exercises are an important part of a well-rounded fitness program. This will help in preventing injuries and keep your body from wearing down.
Get your core muscles, the muscles around your trunk, and the pelvis area in better shape. Core exercises improve your balance and stability and can help tone your abs, and strong core muscles may also help improve back pain.
A well-rounded fitness program includes aerobics, muscle fitness along with core exercises added, for the best way to reach your fitness goals.
Here is a Mayo Clinic link for Core exercises including instructions on how to do them.
“Respect your body. It’s the only one you get.” YURI ELKAIM
You can hire a coach or personal trainer
If you need guidance or to stay motivated, you can think about hiring a certified health coach, certified personal trainer, certified virtual personal trainer, or certified in-home trainer. Check their credentials before hiring. Click on the banner below to check out what Fyt Personal Training has to offer.
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A certified health coach bridges the gap between an individual’s current lifestyle health habits and those habits that the individual hopes to change or establish.
Certified personal trainers are nationally certified fitness professionals with advanced knowledge of human anatomy and physiology, nutrition, and exercise science. They have the ability to create and lead individual and group exercises that are tailor-made for the health needs of their clients.
A certified virtual personal trainer is a fully qualified personal trainer who can prepare a workout program for you based on what you want to achieve, whether it be weight loss, strength or just getting fitter.
In-home certified personal trainers offer many benefits, such as a convenient way to reach your health and fitness goals. You can save time and stay motivated. When hiring any personal trainer, verify that the trainer has earned a certification from a nationally accredited institution and carries liability insurance.
Take the time to verify these two things so you can feel confident that you are hiring a professional who can safely assist you in achieving your fitness goals.
There are online apps to hire someone who can train you virtually. They can give you safety tips to get started and accomplish your goal without getting injured.
Be sure to check with your doctor before doing any exercise routine, to see what might be the best routine for your age, health, and weight. If you are elderly, low-impact might be recommended versus high-impact.
Don’t push yourself and overdo it. Pain does not mean gain, so if you are feeling pain be sure to stop and call your doctor to see what they think you should do. Do not continue to exercise until they say it is OK.
Make sure you drink lots of water to stay hydrated and eat healthy meals so you will have the energy to exercise as you will be burning calories.
Wear the right clothing and shoes, and choose the right equipment for the exercises you are doing.
Be smart about what you do and your body will thank you, and enjoy a healthy and fit lifestyle!
Here is another post about exercising – How To Fit Exercise Into Your Busy Life
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See you soon! Denise
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4 thoughts on “How To Prevent Injuries When Exercising”
This was a great read, very informative!
Thank you, Danielle, I am glad you enjoyed the post! When you get a chance read or share my other posts on health and fitness.
Great tips! I definitely have been taking it slower to start and this is week 3 working out with my 18 year old granddaughter. Great link for core exercises.
Thank you for your comment, Angie! We all want to stay healthy and avoid injuries, but have to be smart in how we do it. It is great when you can get kids and grandchildren involved! This way you are setting a great example for a healthy lifestyle.