Most runners do a minimum of a brief, straightforward jog earlier than any race, interval exercise or different higher-intensity session. It’s extensively accepted as being a helpful, certainly a obligatory, prelude to a tough session, however what precisely is going on in your physique throughout your warmup, and the way does it profit your efficiency? New analysis has uncovered the reply.
The research, printed within the Journal of Basic Physiology, was led by Osaka College, The Jikei College College of Drugs and Nationwide Institutes for Quantum Science and Expertise. The specifics of the way it enhances muscle efficiency had not beforehand been clearly understood; this research aimed to uncover the results of heating on muscle contraction and discover whether or not completely different muscle groups have various temperature sensitivities.
The analysis group found that muscle cells include sure proteins that act as temperature sensors. They discovered that skeletal muscle groups, that are accountable for motion, have been extra delicate to heating than the muscle groups of the center, for instance. This larger sensitivity permits skeletal muscle groups to contract shortly and effectively when warmed up, even from slight will increase in temperature ensuing from gentle motion, reminiscent of a warmup jog.
Alternatively, the muscle groups of the center have a decrease temperature sensitivity, which helps them keep a steady beat, no matter temperature. This is sensible, as a result of whereas your muscle groups have the chance to relaxation whenever you’re not utilizing them, your coronary heart must beat repeatedly irrespective of how scorching or chilly you might be. In different phrases, a slight enhance in temperature advantages your skeletal muscle groups, however has comparatively little impact in your coronary heart.
What does this imply for runners?
The findings counsel that warming up skeletal muscle groups can improve their effectivity by saving power and permitting for higher relaxation when not in use.
After all, is that there’s a high quality line between warming up properly and over-taxing your muscle groups earlier than your exercise or race. How a lot or how little you heat up will rely on a number of components, together with the size of your run or race. (Usually, the shorter the race or exercise, the quicker it’s essential to run, and due to this fact the longer you must spend warming up.) One other issue is the temperature exterior–you possible don’t must heat up for as lengthy when it’s 30 C exterior as when it’s 5 C.
The warmup doesn’t need to difficult. Usually, a lightweight, 10-minute jog and a few easy warmup drills are all you might want to be able to run at your greatest.