Always stretch. Always. As I mentioned earlier this week, I managed to injure myself while working out. The large part of this injury comes from something you should never ever do: Use a weighted jump rope barefoot on hard concrete flooring. But! It's also because I didn't stretch. In fact even if I had been smart and used shoes it's possible (though not horribly so) that this would have happened anyway because I didn't stretch anything. So make sure you wear well padded shoes and you stretch before you exercise, folks. Because now I have shin splints. And they hurt like a bitch. Granted, shin splints are nothing overly serious. They're a fairly common injury, especially among sportsfolk. But they hurt. A lot. And they make life difficult because you need to pretty much just rest them and can't run or jump or anything. And then your goddamned cat gets out and you have sprint up and down the poorly-paved very long driveway barefoot trying to catch him, aggravating the injury, which means it'll take longer to heal, at best, and at worst, you may have stress fractures now, which could again be worsened into a fully fractured tibia. Be smart, Writerly Friends, when you exercise. Because just doing is painful. Very, very painful.
But on the plus side, you'll finally have a reason to walk around with a cane that isn't "Because I can, damn it."