Hawk On Health

With Heather Hawk
Healthy Planet Fitness Writer

A Smooth Transition to Spring Training

There are new blooms on the flowers, buds on the trees, and a new bounce in our fitness regimen with the arrival of warmer temperatures. The fresh air of Spring appears to be the perfect time for the launch of this new column – “Hawk On Health”.

I’m Heather Hawk and I’m excited to join the Healthy Planet team as a fitness contributor. My goal is to answer your health and fitness questions and curiosities. During my 16 year career as a health and wellness correspondent, I’ve sought to provide the audience with realistic and attainable information.

As a wife, mother of two, and entrepreneur, I understand the hectic pace of daily life. Making fitness a part of the already busy schedule can be a challenge. My role is to show you the many options available to help you reach your goals. From the beginner to the fitness enthusiast, I will have information to heighten your motivation and your results. I look forward to your inquiries.
With summertime quickly approaching, and shorts and swimsuits soon coming out of the closet, many people are jumping into exercise. So let’s get to it!

St. Louis has a wonderful spring season with mild days that are perfect for taking your workouts outside. If you were consistent with your indoor workouts during the winter, then you may feel that your body is prepared for outdoor activities. However, there is always a transition period when you switch activity, environment, or terrain. Here are a few simple guidelines for an injury-free transition to your “spring training”.

• Terrain: If you have been using cardio machines for the past few months then your joints are accustomed to a more forgiving and less jarring surface. Decrease your distance and frequency (number of days) of your running for the first 2-3 weeks to allow your body to adjust to the harder surface.

• Hit the track: The surface of the track is a more forgiving surface than concrete sidewalks and roads. If you are prone to knee or ankle discomfort yet still want to take your training outdoors to enjoy the weather, then the track is a solution for you.

• Clothing: Be prepared for weather changes such as a drop in temperature, rain, or wind. The simple solution is to layer your clothing. Start with a base layer made from a moisture control fabric to keep you warm and dry. Next a wind or rain resistant jacket will keep you warm if the temperature falls or dry if you get caught in a storm. As you heat up enough to have ideal weather then you can simply take it off and tie it around your waist.

• Start slowly: The biggest mistake that you can make is doing too much too soon. The healthiest way to begin is slowly and pick up the intensity gradually. If you stay consistent with your workouts you will see results for summer.

Got a fitness question for Heather? Email her at info@thehealthyplanet.com.

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