Springing Into Activity: The Do's and Don'ts

As soon as the weather turns and we feel the sun and warmth of Spring in the Midwest, we tend to get out and do our favorite activities after winter hibernation. Unfortunately, this can bring injuries and/or pain if you’re not careful and rush into them. We encourage people to strength train regularly (1-2 times per week, full-body) to prevent some of these problems. You can still overdo it when you do too much too soon no matter how strong you are. Whether you are training for a sport or a weekend project your body needs to acclimate. We recommend easing into the activity, staying mindful about how your body feels and most importantly taking rest days!

Here are some more helpful tips to stay healthy this spring:

  • When returning to sport (running, biking, golfing, etc.), ease into your pace, volume and intensity.
    • For example, if you want to begin running again we suggest using a slower pace and short distances and gradually build up. To start, schedule rest days or strength training/yoga in between runs to let your body adjust.
    • If you are golfing, start with some practice swings at your house, then golf 9 holes, then the full 18 and don’t forget to put some rest days in between rounds!
  • For outdoor spring projects, recruit friends and family to help ease the load or spread work over the course of a few days.
    • For example, if you are digging in your garden, spread out the work over a few weekends. This reduces the amount of time per day spent kneeling and bending over. If you do too much to soon you can get back pain or tendonitis from sudden overuse of a joint.
  • You’ll see a common theme of REST in my examples…because rest is SO IMPORTANT. We see overuse injuries all the time from repetitive sports but that can also happen after a weekend of repetitive shoveling or something similar.
  • Soreness after activity does not equal injury. Your body is telling you that you did something new and telling you what muscles you used. Normal soreness should go away after a few days.
  • If you feel more than normal muscle soreness after activity, you can apply ice to the affected area to reduce inflammation if it is injury related. If you do feel a specific tweak during activity you should stop, ice and see a medical professional if necessary!
  • Strength train your full-body 1-2 times per week. As I mentioned, most activities use some body parts more than others which create imbalances in your body which lead to injury. Strength training your full body will maintain muscle balance and promote blood flow to the entire body. Strength training can help your body heal faster by promoting blood flow and promoting muscle building post-workout!

If you have more questions about preparing for spring activity or how strength training can help, contact us for a FREE introductory session to learn more!

Written By: Morgan Maule