I hate stretching.
I also hate how terribly inflexible I am.
Yep, I can see the correlation there.
There are only two occasions when I actually stretch:
- When I am forced to ie. in a group exercise class.
- When it is already too late. ie. when I wake up the day after a tough workout and discover that I can’t sit on the toilet without wincing.
I’ve always envied the yoga babe / dancer types who can bend their slender limbs every which way with grace and ease. I on the other hand, can barely touch my toes. I wish that was an exaggeration, but it’s not. Not only that, any attempts at deep stretches usually leave me not so gracefully grunting and grimacing.
I’m sure that my flexibility, like any other area of fitness, could be improved if I were just to put the training in. So why don’t I?
Well, there are a few reasons:
- I’m bad at it (I realise this is a stupid reason, but I’m sure some of you will be able to relate to the fact that doing things you are no good at is not fun!)
- It hurts.
- It’s boring.
- It takes too long (30 seconds for each stretch, psshhhhh!)
- I just don’t like it, alright?!
So why do I suddenly feel like this needs to change?
Last week, after I completed the workout mentioned here, my gym buddy warned me that I should stretch afterwards. Do you know what I said?
“Pah, stretching is for wimps. I never stretch, I’ll be fine.”
I wasn’t fine. Turns out, 100 dead lifts in one session really gets those hamstrings screaming.
Thursday morning when we met for our 10k run, I was struggling, whilst she smiled the whole way.
It wasn’t just the hamstrings in the end either, other little niggles were beginning to appear here and there. Running 6 miles in the rain at 07:00 is bad enough already without tight hamstrings, a dodgy ankle and a twinge in your knee. After 53 minutes of listening to me moaning, Gym Buddy informed me that all the little aches and pains I was experiencing were probably connected to the fact that my leg muscles are too tight. Makes sense really!
I hate the thought of getting an injury, especially as we all know that on the days when you can’t run, the sun shines brightly and there is a gentle breeze in the air (also known as my PERFECT running conditions!)
All of this got me thinking, maybe stretching isn’t just for wimps after all…
So here is my pledge:
- I will make time to stretch thoroughly after every workout.
- I will use the
evilfoam roller after every run.
- I will never say that stretching is just for wimps ever again. Promise.