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This week I want to talk to you about stretching. In the summer you may not want to do a full workout some days due to the heat, but as fall rolls around it becomes easier. While it might not be fun, small things like simple stretches can make all the difference in the world. Just keeping your body nice and loose for the next day you feel up to working out can mean the difference between pulled muscles and a productive session. Here are some great stretches that don’t take much effort for you to try.

Touch Your Toes. Touching your toes may sound too simple, but it really is a good thing to try and do every day. It’s also helpful if you try it from different angles and positions. Before you get out of bed in the morning, see how far down your leg you can reach while sitting. Once you get up, bend over and try touching your toes while standing on the ground. You may be surprised at how much of a difference there is between the distances depending on how you’re positioned.

Standing Side Stretch. This stretch is fairly self-explanatory, but it is extremely helpful. While standing straight up, lift your arms over your head and interlace your fingers while pointing up towards the sky. Take a deep breath and slowly bend towards your right. Hold that for a minimum of five seconds before bringing your body back up to center and then repeating the stretch to your left.

The Butterfly. This one will likely remind you of gym class. While sitting down on the floor, bring the bottoms of your feet together with your knees out to the sides. Bring your feet in as close to your body as you can and then lean forward. This will help to stretch out your thighs and your back, so make sure to breathe through it even though your stomach may feel restricted.

When you are too busy to do a full workout, stretching can be a great option. It isn’t always the best day for you to go for a run or sometimes you’re just running a bit too late, so it’s good to have something that you can fall back on. Just make sure you get back to your normal exercise as soon as you can!

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