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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 04-27-2010, 07:54 AM   #1
Nick A Wilson
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Question about warm ups and weights...

Hi everyone,

firstly, I am not actively doing CF at the moment. Im under physio for a bunch of stuff before I can do that again so this isn't really about warmups before a CF session, but before lifting weights in general.

I like to take a 20min break from sitting at the computer to go do 3x5 chest press for example. That's it, nothing else in that session. Later in the day i might go do 5000m on the rower.

My question is: Do I have to get my whole body temp up before doing some presses, pullups, whatever or is working up to a work set (several light sets) enough?

Seems such a pain to do 5mins on a rower before 10mins lifting then another 5 mins on a rower to cool down!

Not clear on warmup / cool downs as it applies to this, would appreciate some pointers.

Many thanks.
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Old 04-27-2010, 08:21 AM   #2
Diego Sommariva
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Re: Question about warm ups and weights...

You need to remember the reason to warm up is not just to get blood flowing, but to warm up your muscle fibers and to be able to achieve full ROM so you don't injure yourself. It might be tedious, but just think of the consequences if you don't warm up. More than a 5 minute row I would do an overall mobility and flexibility warm up + the row if you feel like it. The light sets before the actual workout serve not only as an "on hands" warm up but a neuromuscular activator (can't think of a better way to explain this), to ensure the muscles you need are up and ready!

As a cool down I would advise stretching, to ensure your muscles don't clog up and become stiff and inflexible.

Good luck!

Diego
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Last edited by Diego Sommariva; 04-27-2010 at 08:23 AM.. Reason: Forgot to add cool down
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:14 AM   #3
Nick A Wilson
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Re: Question about warm ups and weights...

Thanks a lot Diego.

So you're saying I DO need to get body temp up (muscle fibres warmed up) AND do some mobility before doing a set of presses and ALSO do light sets?

BUT, I can just stretch out as a cool down?

Seems a pain but I really have enough injuries to be contending with so I certainly don't want to cause myself any issues!
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:42 AM   #4
Scott A Martin
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Re: Question about warm ups and weights...

Nick, no one can give you an exact answer. Everyone is different and only you can know for sure what works for you. I definitely do not think that as a rule you need 5 minutes on the rower before bench pressing. However, all else equal, it's better to over-warm up than under-warm up. For a press workout I normally just work up to the work weight with lighter rep sets. I also swing my arms around between sets to get my shoulders warmed up and loosened up. That's it. I've never had any problems, but like I said, everyone is different.
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:50 AM   #5
Diego Sommariva
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Re: Question about warm ups and weights...

Nick, Scott is correct in saying there is no perfect answer. I myself like to warm up a lot because like you I've had my share of injuries, and it's a damn long list believe me. This is why I always suggest a pretty all-inclusive warm up, to avoid any surprises. Even well warmed up chit can happen, so it all depends on your destiny I guess
Try different warm ups each day and see which one you like best and you feel has done the job. I see peeps walk into the gym all the time straight off the street and go straight for a heavy bench press or biceps curl. It can be done, but the odds are certainly playing against them.

Good luck!

Diego
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Last edited by Diego Sommariva; 04-27-2010 at 11:56 AM.. Reason: D'oh! Wrong name!!
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:54 AM   #6
Nick A Wilson
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Re: Question about warm ups and weights...

Thanks Scott. I certainly feel okay warming up with lighter sets, but what Diego says about muscles stiffening up afterwards rings a strong bell. My muscles feel quite "tight" after any upper body workout and it usually takes a good 6-8mins to get rid of it on a rower. Perhaps for me the cool down on the rower is more important that the warm up!
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:57 AM   #7
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: Question about warm ups and weights...

Since you're already dealing with injuries, I'd advise more warmup rather than less, to the point where if you only have 20 minutes it might be a better idea to spend the time on stretching and whatever rehab exercises you have rather than lifting heavy stuff.

That said, I tend to abbreviate my warmup depending on the workout I have planned. There isn't much need to warm up legs if you're going to be benching, or arms if you're going to be running sprints.

Katherine
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:59 AM   #8
Nick A Wilson
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Re: Question about warm ups and weights...

Point well mad Kathryn.

Actually I tend to do physio in the morning, some kind of weights in the afternoon and then physio in the evening and/or some cardio --i have all the stuff i need in the garage and work at home so although it still takes a fair chunk out of the day it's not like I have to travel to a gym 3x!
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