Fitness Friday: Stretching & Rolling

Welcome to the second post in the Fitness Friday series, you can read the first one here – Fitness Friday: Inspiration.

When it comes to establishing a new fitness routine sometimes people get amped up and jump head-first into achieving their new goals. And while pushing yourself and enthusiasm are incredibly helpful, you also have to take into account your body’s learning curve. Especially if you’re adding in new movements or exercises. If you’ve never done a spin class before or lifted weights – Ease into them rather than signing up for a 7 day a week bootcamp program.

Too much too soon can not only lead to burn out, but also to injuries. And believe me when I say that nothing will put a damper in your healthy living plan quite like a debilitating injury. Ouch and groan!

A great way to help your body adapt to changes in your fitness levels in through stretching & rolling. Read on for more information on including these great activities in your daily routine.

Lorna-Jane-Beginners-Fitness-Stretching-One-Leg-Stretch

{Pants & jacket courtesy of Lorna Jane // Shoes from Brooks}

Stretching:

I know people who like to get into the gym, get their workout done, and get out. They swear they don’t need, or have time, to stretch.

I disagree.

Regardless of what workout you’re doing – Running, spin, yoga, power lifting – You will benefit from a few minutes of stretching before and after your workout. I personally stretch each morning before work, before and after my daily gym session, and again before bed. Make it a habit and you’ll appreciate the results.

Note: For those of you who are naturally flexible or have been involved in gymnastics, acrobatics, dance, diving, cheerleading, or other sports & activities where flexibility is emphasized – A word of caution. Being overly flexible can be dangerous as well, and you may be more prone to injuries so please be careful. As a former gymnast and a diver I’ve seen & experienced this first hand – One easy solution is to stretch and do workouts in front of a mirror to ensure you’re not hyperextending or locking out your joints.

Lorna-Jane-Beginners-Fitness-Stretching-Standing-Roller

Related Reading:

Rolling:

When you’re consistently working out your muscles get tight and the stress of that pressure causes knots to form. Using a PVC or foam roller after a workout or even the day after a hard gym session can break-up your muscles and reduce overall tightness. I schedule rolling sessions for myself three times a week but I also have a roller at home and supplement a rough week of training with additional muscle-crunching sessions in the comfort of my living room.

Easing into this practice can be painful, especially if you have really tight muscles. So start out using a lighter foam roller once or twice a week and slowly add more pressure and consistency as you get used to the feeling .

Here are some basic moves to try:

Lorna-Jane-Beginners-Fitness-Stretching-Rolling-Side

{Photos by Jennymay Villarete of J. Villarete Photography}

Related Reading: Motivation, Fitness Motivation, and Model & Blogger Fitness

I have to admit that of all the pieces I tried on at Lorna Jane these full length running tights were my favorite. They fit perfectly, never ride up when I’m working out, and I’ve gotten tons of compliments. Obviously I need them in every color now.

Also, I’d like to give a big shout out to the amazing ladies of the Union Street store who played dress-up with me for nearly an hour to help pick out my amazing Lorna Jane pieces. They were fun, friendly, and had great knowledge about the store & the products.

Do YOU stretch & roll out on a regular basis? How do YOU keep your body healthy?

{Disclaimer: Prior to making any dramatic changes to your fitness routine or diet you should consult a physician}

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6 Responses to Fitness Friday: Stretching & Rolling

  1. Happy Friday, Caity! You’re my featured fashionista today.
    http://www.ohtobeamuse.com/2013/12/featured-fashionista-caity.html

  2. I have a love/hate relationship with both stretching and rolling. It hurts so bad and takes so long! How do you keep it from getting boring? xoxo, BA

    • Once you’ve loosened up your muscles a bit, it starts to feel pretty amazing, so that’s really encouraging for me. I know it’ll be feel better if I keep doing it!

  3. I am so inflexible that teachers often give me sympathetic smiles at the end of barre classes. Still, if I don’t stretch my hamstrings I start to get a lot of lower back pain. It’s just as important as exercising so thanks for the reminder!

    • I’m the same way w/ my back – I really start to feel it if I skip my rolling.

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