Many people will set fitness goals and plans to make try and make it their healthiest year yet. For some, this means trying out new classes and workout regimes to get fit but health experts say that if you don’t listen to your body, these activities can result in pain and unnecessary injury. This is when expert muscle maintenance such as Myotherapy can help you avoid delays from injury, strain and weakness.

“Now is a time you start seeing a lot of it because people start making New Year’s resolutions to get in shape, and they start getting overly exuberant getting in an exercise routine that they probably weren’t ready for” says certified orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Derek Ochiai.

Ochiai says people should be applauded for making New Year’s fitness resolutions. New exercise routines can be a great motivator because they get people excited about fitness and then they’re more likely to stick with it. But, he’s seen many patients who have been hurt and injured jumping into new high-intensity formats, such as P90, Insanity and Cross-Fit.

Everything is based on what you know, how you do it, who helped you to do it, and how much common sense you use. Here are some things to remember when working out to achieve those health resolutions:

1. Warm Up

It’s important to stretch and make sure the muscles and joints are warm before you start the exercise, Bonati said. When you don’t stretch, you put a lot of extra pressure on your joints and can end up hurting yourself.

2. Use Common Sense

“You know very well what you can do,” Bonati said. “If you go to a gym, you’re going to see a lot of people doing dumb exercises.” If you think it might be a bad idea, then don’t do it. For instance, a person with little experience can’t lift 200 pounds in free weights without suffering health consequences. They’ll end up with deteriorated discs and muscle and joint pain. It’s imperative that you start out with smaller weights and not increase the weight size until the muscle has grown.

3. Know Your Limits
Don’t compare yourself to other people or to your activity level earlier in your life, Ochiai said. Just because someone else is performing an exercise at a gym or on TV doesn’t mean you’re ready for it. The chance of injury is minimal when you are a little more moderate and listen to your body’s needs. “It’s only when you start pushing yourself beyond your limits that you start to have more susceptibility to injury,” he said.

4. Take It Slow And Steady

Make your progression a slow and gradual uphill process, and realise that it’s going to take time to reach your goals. “The reason that you’re doing an exercise program is not for a week or three weeks. It’s not a sprint; it’s a marathon. You’re doing it to try to improve your health for the rest of your life,” Ochiai said. “Nobody goes from a couch potato to working out like an Olympic athlete in three months.”

5. Assess Your Pain/Soreness

Ochiai said it’s normal to be a little sore after a new workout. However, it’s not good if you’re experience pain that makes you wince, and you should never continue through an exercise if you’re starting to feel pain. If you have pain that’s not going away after a few days, it could be a sign that you’re not doing the exercise right or you pushed too hard. Try resting the injured area for a few days and then go back to that activity at a lower level and work your way up.

6. See A Professional

Personal trainers, fitness instructors and Myotherapists are great resources for tackling a new workout routine correctly and effectively, Bonati said. Ochiai said it’s important to visit your doctor before starting a new fitness routine if you have underlying conditions, or if you have pain that’s not going away. Myotherapists can also be a big help if you’re having trouble getting past pain while exercising.