Have you increased your walking, or decided to try running for the first time?
I bet you thought, now is the time to start that routine that you have always put off, and now you have the time to get it started.
And now that you have started, you have developed some little niggle, pain or have had to stop exercising due to this change in activity.
So what happened? Increasing your exercise routine is great for your mind and your body, but the body has let you down, why?
It takes approximately 6 weeks for your soft tissues – that is your muscles, tendon and ligaments to adjust to the change in your activity level, and if you go too hard, too soon, something has to give.
A rule of thumb is don’t increase your workload by more than 10% a week. So, if you are walking 30 minutes a day, if you want to increase it, walk 33 minutes the next week. The research has shown that if you increase too fast (ie more than 10%), 3 weeks from when you increased your workload, you will get an injury.
To stop these injuries, it is worthwhile changing your routine. What I mean by that is walk on day one, then on day two do some upper body work, like lifting weights, push ups, etc. But only start gently, until your body adjusts to the load. Then day 3 go back to the walking, day 4 upper body, etc.
You will find at first you are a little sore, try using a foam roller on your legs and your gluteal muscles (your butt muscles), and there are a huge number of those videos on you tube if you search.
While you are working on your physical fitness, also try working on your mental fitness by trying some meditation. Now I am not getting all hippy dippy here, but research has shown there are wonderful benefits of meditating daily. You don’t have to sit cross-legged on the floor and hum, you can just sit in a comfortable chair, close your eyes and concentrate on your breathing, just listen as you breathe in, then breathe out. Focus on that and nothing else. All you have to do is 5 minutes. When you initially start, that will feel like forever, but as you do it daily, it will get easier and easier.
One of the common things we are seeing in the clinic at the moment is a lot of foot pain and ankle pain from the increased activity during this shutdown. These are sometimes little niggles that can turn into big problems down the track if you don’t get them sorted now. Just give us a call on 9542 3491, and our team can get you painfree in no time!!
Stay safe, stay well.
The Team From Sutherland Podiatry Centre