Warmup vs workout prep


"Hey Mary, how are you doing today?  Ok let's get you started with 15 minutes on the bike, and I’ll be right with you."

Ah yes, the personal trainer's secret weapon in getting themselves some breathing space between clients!!

At CFNZ our entire business philosophy is built around coaching. We want to spend the entire hour coaching you, not watching you on a stationary bike while we drink our 3rd protein shake of the day......

What this means, is that the warm up that our session kicks off with, is not really a warm up at all....... It's workout prep.....

We're amping up your neuromuscular pathways, grooving and improving movement patterns, preparing your body for the demands of speed, load and volume, we're ensuring stabilising muscles of the shoulder, midline and hips are firing, in order for you to be able to perform to the best of your ability and do it safely.

And we're going to coach you through that. Because there is an element of skill required, you can get better at it, and we're here to help you.

The warm up, occurs BEFORE this. When you arrive at the gym BEFORE class.....

Effectively you're getting 'hot and sweaty', increasing blood flow around the muscles, and synovial fluid around the joints, and finding some personal flow too, ie getting your mind into what is coming. Perhaps you've just woken up, or you've just rushed out of a meeting, but the warm up is a great place to take a few deep breaths and remind yourself that the next hour is YOURS and yours alone.

An easy routine to run through would be;

  1. Bike/Row/Ski/Light sled drag

  2. Joint Circles - wrists, elbows, shoulders, hips, knees, ankles

  3. Animal movements - bear crawl, crab walk etc

  4. Basic bodyweight movements - squats, lunges, pushups, ring rows, situps.

  5. Workout Prep - we've got you from here.....

Warm up > Workout Prep > Strength/Skill > Conditioning Prep > Conditioning > Cooldown

The warm up and the cooldown aren't strictly contained within the workout, so that we can spend more of the class on the all important coaching.

This doesn't mean that warming up and cooling down are not just as important, it just means that it's on you to get them done.

Find a workout buddy to hold you accountable to being their 10mins before and staying 10mins after, and watch the 1% gains accumulate!


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Darren Ellis