betterME Day 21 : Stretch Armstrong

The challenge before me was to stretch, which can be taken several ways.  There is a physical stretch, there is stretching limits, and there is stretching the mind.  And sometimes they are interconnected.  I’ve already done challenges on stretching my limits and trust me when I say this weekend my mind has been stretched so I focused on the physical.

I do some weights and a lot of stretching” — Mike Ditka, former Chicago Bears coach
I never struggled with injury problems because of my preparation – in particular my stretching” — Edwin Moses, Track & Field athlete

Stretching can help you in many ways :

  • some mental tension, even stress,  will be relieved, leaving you feeling fresh and ready for any challenge
  • physical tension you have will also be relieved and you’ll feel great
  • releasing mental and physical tension increases your energy
  • stretching increases blood circulation which leads to you feeling better and able to think more effectively
  • that in turn helps you maintain a better posture
  • all the above keeps you flexible which will keep you young and healthy
  • stretching reduces chances for injury and relieves post work-out pain

It’s kind of funny that today’s challenge was this.  I was chatting with a friend who recently just started running again and he comment that his knees hurt after.  My advice to him?  To make sure he stretches before and after running 🙂

As I mentioned I usually skip stretching as it takes time.  But today before my workout I stretched for a good 10 minutes before starting exercises.  And afterwards to stretched for 5 minutes.

During the day, anytime I got up I’d stretch.  You know those kind of stretches where you reach you arms up as far as can and exhale.  The kind that feels so good you get a head rush.  You can’t tell me that doing that doesn’t make you feel better?

Every time I got up I’d also stretch my calves by standing on my tippy toes.    Stretching makes you exhale and it does kind of relieve you in a way.

I did notice that by purposely stretching every chance I got that I didn’t feel as much stress today.  Remember I’m out of town on business. I’ve had long hours and many challenges but today nothing got to me.  I felt much more at ease so I’m going to attribute that to stretching 🙂

So give it a whirl and see how your day goes.  Purposely stretch as often as you can and I bet you won’t feel as worn out at the end of the day !  Animals stretch all the time so why shouldn’t we?

The challenge for tomorrow : Do something spontaneous.

Another long day so I’m outta here.

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