Marathon Series – Warming Up, Do I Have To?

Is it worth it to “wake up” your muscles or is it better to save time and energy? Ever a debate! 

If you’re familiar with the work of Kelly Starrett, he writes about how leopards don’t need to warm-up before they run, so why should we? His answer is that unlike a leopard, we often subject our bodies to hours of sitting with bad posture and subsequently moving with poor mechanics.

So yes, if you spend most of the day slouching at work or slumped in the car, you should most definitely warm up before EVERY SINGLE run.

Running Warm Up Marathon Series – Warming Up, Do I Have To?

IMPORTANT NOTE: The type of warm-up you do is very important if you don’t want to be wasting your time. Not all warm-ups are effective and some are even detrimental to your performance!

“Warming up” can mean very different things to different people. This generic term can include anything from a pre-workout one-mile jog to ladder sprints, to dynamic and even static stretching. What should you do?

At Body Gears, we take it a step further and often prescribe something for our patients to do before they even start to warm-up. It’s called “Getting in Gear” or GIG for short. According to Body Gears Founder, April Oury:

“It’s analogous to turning a dimmer switch all the way up so that
once the electricity reaches the light bulb, the bulb shines brightly.
Doing just a warm-up routine [without a GIG] is like leaving the light dim.
The light will still turn on, but it has significantly more potential for brightness.”

A GIG is always customized specifically to your physical blueprint and what your body needs to get the most out of your warm-up and maximize your training. It could mean mobilizing a joint whose stiffness contributed to an old injury or even activating a specific muscle whose sluggishness is contributing to your premature fatigue.

Once you’ve completed your prescribed GIGs, it’s on to a dynamic warm-up. The goal of this type of warm-up is twofold:

1) Increase blood flow to your muscles
2) Remind your muscles how to generate force through ranges of motion you don’t frequently use during the day

            a. By showing your muscles they have the strength to support you and don’t have to                      shut off or seize up, you’ll significantly reduce your risk of injury.

We’ve developed a dynamic warm-up with 7 quick moves that target your leg muscles and especially your hip joints to help you safely max out your body’s full potential. Sign up for our bonus Running E-book below to get the warm-up in its entirety.




Check out our Free Running E-book that includes more information about how to select the right shoes for you and the Body Gears Dynamic Warm-Up to get the right muscles firing before your run.


Email us at [email protected] to receive your FREE copy.


Every year at the Chicago Marathon, we support Team Imerman Angels & their mission to provide personalized connections that enable one-on-one support among cancer fighters, survivors, and caregivers!

Find out more about this amazing group & how you can get involved:

Imerman Angels Website | Follow them on social media @ImermanAngels


As always, consult with your Licensed Physical Therapist for individualized advice. For those in Illinois and California, visit your PT immediately without a prescription or referral.

Give us a call at (877) 709-1090 for more information or fill out the contact us form and we will contact you.

Don’t forget to check out our InstagramFacebook, and Podcasts for more great information and resources.


Copyright © 2018 by Body Gears Physical Therapy All rights reserved.
This blog or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher except for the use of brief quotations in a review.