[ BREATHE: how stretching can help ]

So we are only two weeks into the new year and you’re already contemplating if you need a margarita, an extra $million or a trip to the Maldives. Before you go completely ape shit, here’s how stretching can help. We know getting bendy can help keep our mind alert, reduce muscle tension and the obvious, increase flexibility. But how and when do we need to get our stretch on before we throw our last not-already-broken new years resolution out the window.

GET OPTIMISTIC: excess stress causes your muscles to contract, making you feel tense causing a negative impact on mind and body. A.M. STRETCH to give your mind and body a jump-start, stretching also encourages the release of endorphins, providing a sense of euphoria (so you don’t hate everyone and everything the minute you get out of bed). P.M. STRETCHING right before bed to loosen tight muscles, increase blood flow and  help you relax. Making you feel more tranquil so those much needed ZZZs are all that better!


GET ENERGISED: Stretching loosens your muscles and tendons, reducing muscle fatigue and increasing blood flow. We all know how spent we feel after a killer workout (or during), so to keep your workout going throw in some stretches as you go! By doing so you can delay the onset of muscle fatigue by keeping oxygen flowing and therefore adequate nutrients delivered to your muscles, increasing endurance.

But what if you don’t even make it to your workout and you’re that close to falling asleep at work that gym seems to be a no-go zone? Get out of your seat and do a few stretches for a energy boost at your desk. Muscles tighten when we get tired, and sitting in a desk chair cramped over can make us feel even more lethargic, so feel free to stand up and do some stretches. It will help you to quickly revitalize your energy levels.

WORKOUT SMARTER: If your muscles are already tight when you rock up to gym, they will be less effective during exercise. Regular stretching will relax your muscles and therefore make them readily available for work when you need them.