run, running tips, Uncategorized

Warming Up Before a Race

Should you warm-up before your race? Some say you should others argue that it’s not worth it. I can see both sides, but I lean one way.

Quick stretch after my standard 10min warm-up.

The Two Arguments

Warm-up before a race: You always see this before a race. People are stretching, jogging back and forth, swinging their legs and loosening up. Should you be doing all those things? Majority of the time experts would agree that a proper warm-up is necessary before a race. The warm up will provide your muscles with oxygen, increase your body temperature, and allow you to get used to the motion of running.

Do not warm-up before a race: This is an argument that stems from training or your history of running. Stretching before racing is almost pointless without actual movement of the body. Just stretching before a race can actually increase a chance of a pulled muscle. So, stretching without a proper warm-up is not something you want to do before your race. Also, if during your training you never warmed up, you might want to stick to that routine.

InstagramReady (1 of 1)-5
Leg swings before Get In Gear Half Marathon

My Thoughts

In reality, there isn’t much of an argument around whether you should warm-up or not before a race. The argument is if you are going to warm-up, do it correctly otherwise there could be little benefit and actually could increase risk of injury. My pre-race warm up routine is as follows:

  1. 10 – 15 min jog
  2. 5x 20m strides
  3. 5x 20m kips
  4. 5x 20m side strides
  5. 5x 20m high knees/butt kicks
  6. 10 cross-body leg swings
  7. 10 lateral leg swings
  8. Slight stretch

I typically start my warm-up about an hour before the race. This gives me enough time to get through the warm-up and get into my race gear/hit the gear check.

Finishing the Get In Gear Half Marathon

Other resources

Here are some other resources that talk about warming up before running:

Do you have a warm-up routine that you do before every race? Share in the comments below!


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