This pre-race stretch prepares your muscles for miles and miles

meIf you’re thinking of skipping your pre-race warm-up and rushing out the gate, let’s pause for a moment. As tempting as it may be to race to the starting line, taking a few minutes to prepare your body before hitting the pavement will pay off in these miles:Y future miles. Ask Clara Baini, this month’s leader of Club Coach of the Month and founder of Good Day Pilates.

“Today, I’m going to walk you through a series of dynamic pre-race stretches,” Baini says at the top of the video. “[It] It is very important to activate and warm up before going for a run. We want all those muscles to fire up and all those joints to move, so that your run is a little faster and injury-free.”

As Baini alludes, when it comes to running warm-ups, dynamic stretching is the name of the game. This way of loosening up the body involves focusing on joint mobility and range of motion so you can move freely more easily; passive stretching, on the other hand, relaxes the tension in the muscles. The latter is more restful and less active and is therefore best saved for when you finish and dust off your run.

Fortunately, Baini’s pre-race stretch is only 12 minutes long, and it will go by faster than you think because you’re constantly flowing through the movements. You’ll start on the floor with some simple spinal stretches before engaging your core, relaxing your hamstrings, and activating your glutes and quads. By the time the video ends, your body will feel warm and ready to run.

So give it a try the next time you put on your sneakers. Then notice the difference between how you normally feel as the miles roll by and how you feel after a big dynamic stretch beforehand. Queue up the video and get started.

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