Focus on Flexibility

So, you’re going to be running a race this fall? Congratulations! You earn a gold star for focusing on your mental and physical health by getting out and getting active! Here come the long days of training, 5-miler mornings, and running stair sets so you can be prepared to perform your best on the big day.

 But, before you dive into all of the runnings to train, we need to make a little Public Service Announcement. STOP! Drop everything you’re doing, because before you start running yourself ragged you need to remember to focus on one thing—flexibility.

Whether you are running a race, getting back into the golf game, taking up tennis, or starting any other physical activity you need to remember to focus on your flexibility. Flexibility is how much (or how little) your muscles and joints are able to use their full range of motion.  And, muscles that are flexible are much more pliable the less prone to injury than those that are not.

 If you are an athlete (experienced or not) that is looking to dive into the world of flexibility, there are many exercises and workout regimens you can incorporate into your daily routine to improve.  Yoga is one of the most common exercises for improving flexibility and can be modified to meet any ability level. Yet, lifting weights, pilates, and even dance can help to improve your flexibility as well. However, if none of those workouts fit your fancy, you can improve your flexibility through any type of exercise that does not include vast amounts of repetitive motion.

 By focusing on flexibility and not just the task at hand you will turn yourself into a better, well-rounded athlete that’s able to accomplish a variety of physical feats.  So, go get out your yoga mat and put those running shoes away for another day.