If you’re thinking of skipping that pre-run warm-up and sprinting straight out the door, let’s pause for a moment. As tempting as it is to rush to the starting line, taking a few minutes to prime your body before you pound the pavement will pay off in these miles–and future miles. Just ask Clara Baini, this month’s leader of Trainer of the Month Club and founder of Good Day Pilates.
“Today, I’m going to take you through a pre-run dynamic stretch series,” says Baini at the top of the video. “[It] is so important to activate and warm up before you go for a run. We want to get all those muscles firing, and all those joints moving, so that your run is injury-free and a little faster.”
As Baini alludes to, when it comes to running warm-ups, dynamic stretching is the name of the game. This form of loosening up the body involves targeting joint mobility and range of motion so you can move freely with more ease; passive stretching, on the other hand, unwinds tightness in the muscles. The latter is more restorative and less active–and thus, is better saved for when your run is done and dusted.
Fortunately, Baini’s pre-run stretch is only 12 minutes, and it’ll go by quicker than you think because you’re constantly flowing through movements. You’ll start on the floor with some simple spinal stretches before engaging your core, loosening up the hamstrings, and activating the glutes and quads. By the time the video’s over, your body will feel warm and ready to run.
So give it a shot next time you lace up your sneakers. Then, notice the difference between how you normally feel as the miles roll by and how you feel after a great dynamic stretch beforehand. Queue up the video and get started.