It’s no secret that at the beginning of quarantine, I have been on a fitness journey. Last month, I even set some new fitness goals for myself. One goal that isn’t on there but that I have found such joy in is daily stretching. And today of all days, it came in even more clutch than ever before.
I have spent the last several months doing at-home workouts + Pilates. I even did a 30 day Pilates challenge. This kind of lit a fire in me to do more challenges. Craving more instruction + structure than my Frankenstein home gym workouts, I signed up for the Lean Squad Summer Lean 30-Day Challenge. If it’s good enough for Heather McMahan, it’s good enough for me. Today was the first “recovery” day of the challenge + boy did I need it. My buns + hammies were insanely sore. After a nice walk, I tuned into my daily video + was pleasantly surprised that it was full of stretches to help relieve my soreness + get me ready for tomorrow’s workout. It was such a nice reminder that daily stretching can do so much more for you than keep you from cramping.
Benefits of Daily Stretching
Increases Flexibility – A more limber body helps you perform everyday tasks with much more ease + reduces your risk of injury.
Betters Range of Motion – Daily stretching can help your body improve functional movement + run your joints through their full range of motion – which can slow degeneration.
Increases Blood Flow – Improved circulation not only reduces recovery time + sore muscles, but it also helps you feel less sluggish + wakes you up.
Improves Performance – Stretching before a workout or activity like a marathon or sporting event is proven to thought to increase performance, mainly for the reasons listed above.
Improves Posture – Poor posture is typically a result of muscular imbalance in your front or back body. Stretching out your muscles restores the balance + makes it easier to properly hold your head up high.
Decreases Back Pain – A tight lumbar spine is often the result of tightness in your hip flexors, hamstrings, pelvic muscles. If your lower back hurts, try stretching out those muscles + a nice child’s pose or touching your toes for relief.
Relieves Stress – Stretching your muscles relieves tension which can trick you + make you feel more relaxed.
Quiets Your Mind – Daily stretching allows you to focus inward on yourself for a few minutes which can help you center + get into a more relaxed + meditative state.
I don’t have a consistent time that I stretch; it typically depends on that day’s workout. Pilates often serves as my daily stretching session, but I also get some good stretches in after a walk or in the morning if I’m feeling tense.
Looking to get into a fitness routine of your own? You can do so many great workouts at home with some basic equipment. Follow Phil (aka Lean Squad Captain) to learn about his next challenge. He has a 7-Day Quaranlean Challenge that is FREE on Youtube. Be sure to follow me to tag along on my fitness journey!