CIBC Run For The Cure – Warming Up!

Check out today’s sword fight/stretching segment HERE!

What is a really simple thing that a significant number of runners skip, or approach the wrong way? WARMING UP!  It may just be the only thing between you and hitting that goal time you’ve been hoping for, or simply just passing the finish line still standing!

With the CIBC Run For the Cure happening this coming Sunday, October 6th, it’s time to learn to warm up the proper way, all while raising money for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation in this 5 or 1km run/walk at Concord Place.


Three Misconceptions About Warming Up:

1 – If I warm up, I’m going to waste my race energy! You’ve got way more glycogen stored in your muscles than you could possibly expend in a short race (5k, 10k).

2 – Jogging and some stretching in place while I wait near the starting line is good enough for a warm-up! If you want your body to be ready to race, you need to work from rest to race intensity BEFORE the gun goes off. Jogging is a good start to a warm-up, but it’s not complete.  And there’s plenty of evidence that points out how static stretching before exercise has more of a negative than positive impact.  A better strategy is to spend some time in each of your gears.

3 – Warm-up routines look silly and I’m just going to embarrass myself! Do elite runners look silly and embarrassing?  Because they do a whole lot more than the jogging and the stretching.


When To Warm Up:

Finish your warm-up about 5 minutes before you start racing. Ideally it would be best to finish 2 minutes before, but its best to leave a few minutes since races don’t always start off on time. Don’t forget to visit the bathroom right before race time too!


The Warm Up: (Dynamic Stretching – Dynamic stretching is ideal prior to exercise to prepare the joints for movement and muscles for optimal activation)

1. Leg Swings

2. Lunge Matrix (forward, back, and side to side)

3. Inch Worm

4. Skips (gets lower leg, ankle, and feet warmed up)

5. Jog to Start Area (5 minutes prior)


The Cool Down: (Static Stretching – Research suggests that holding the position for 30–60 seconds will increase flexibility in the tissue; conversely, done prior to activity, static stretching may actually inhibit the muscle’s ability to fire)

1. Frog Stretch

2. Quad Strectch (push hips forward)

3. Pigeon (stretches glutes)


In Conclusion – Why Do We Warm Up?:

The main reasons are to raise blood circulation so you’re not ‘going through the gears’ in your race. We also want to raise body temperature and loosen up muscles so they can move more efficiently with less risk of injury.