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Getting the Most Out of Your Exercise

While Starkville has not had the best weather lately, it is supposed to get much better as we prepare to head into the summer. Many locals and students take advantage of this time of year by getting outside to activities and develop exercise routines. The weather is a perfect motivator for us to get off the couch and get fit. Physical activity does so much good for our bodies and minds, no matter how light or how heavy the activity.

It's very important to remember a few things before starting any type of exercise regimen, whether indoor or outdoor.

1. Always get a physical exam to help identify any underlying heart or lung issues.

2. Always hydrate before, during and after any type of physical activity.

3. Always warm up and stretch before exercise or strenuous activity; cool down and stretch after exercise or strenuous activity.

Physical Exam

A physical exam by a professional health care provider can help identify any new onset health issues that could be detrimental to your health when starting an exercise program or any type of strenuous activity. Some of these findings can be treated, or at least properly prepared for. These could include lung diseases such as asthma, irregular heartbeats and/or muscle or joint deformities leading to bodily injuries.


Proper hydration before, during, and after physical activity is extremely important to prevent bodily injuries and dehydration. Hydration gives your heart, lungs and muscles what they need to be flexible and move the way you want. It's kind of like what oil does for the Tin Man - if he wants to actually move, he needs every joint hydrated!

Warming up, Stretching, and Cooling Down

Our bodies have been a little less active during the cold, rainy winter months, so it's not fair to expect them to just go from the couch to a 5k run. This can cause major muscle, tendon and ligament tears and strains, and even lead to fractures, joint displacements and injuries - essentially leaving us IN pain and leaving us OUT of some of our favorite activities.