The first ten minutes usually sets the tone for an exercise session. Once you get moving, it feels good to continue. The momentum starts to build as the endorphins are released into the bloodstream and you start breathing a little bit faster. And as the blood starts to flow faster through your system and your muscles loosen up, the rest of the session is much more pleasurable and you won’t want to stop.
Some new exercisers will feel so good during their first few exercise sessions that they tend to find it difficult to stop. They sometimes overstress the body to the point of pain and physical exhaustion. Then they stop their program before it has had a chance to work for them.
That’s one reason a warm up and light stretching period during the first ten minutes is so important. I emphasize “light” stretching because it’s not good to do heavy stretching at the beginning of an exercise period before you are well warmed up. Cold muscle doesn’t stretch well and over stretching can cause injury.
I have attached a short PDF e-booklet, Warmups and Light Stretches. It includes five warm ups and light stretches to get you started for the first ten minutes. The moves in the booklet will warm you up and provide some “loosening up” movements for your hips and lower back, areas which seem to be problems for seniors when they first start to exercise. You can add some shoulder shrugs and hula hoop hip rotations too for some added loosening up. Do these for a week by themselves with no other exercise and you will be prepared for a light, beginning exercise program next week. (NOTE: This is a DRAFT so please disregard the spelling errors.)
The picture of me doing the side bend was taken a year ago right after I got out of the hospital where I lost 10 to 15 pounds of muscle over a ten day period. It demonstrates just how fast muscles can atrophy in a very short period of time.
Click the following: Warmups and Light Stretches to get the e-booklet. Thanks for reading.