Spring is in the air, and many of us are experiencing cabin fever. We’ve been cooped up for a long, cold, snowy winter and now that the sun is shining and the temperatures are rising, we want to get outside. And we want to go barefoot. And we want to run, hike, swim, play, etc. The best part, we want to do it without all the usual aches and pains. More importantly, we don’t want to get sidelined by an injury.
So, how do we prevent those injuries from happening?
- Start slowly. Don’t go from zero to 100. If you haven’t been hiking or running or walking all winter, don’t pick up where you left off last fall. That’s how you get frustrated and end up quitting because it’s too painful or you got hurt. Basic rule of thumb is to build 10% each week. My husband and I haven’t been walking after dinner all winter so we are starting with a ½ mile walk at night. Slowly, we will add on to that but it’s better to be consistent with your activity than to do too much and be sideline. And while we’re on the subject, if you’ve been in shoes all winter, don’t go barefoot right way. That’s how you end up with nagging shin splints.
- If you are just getting back into gardening and haven’t been active all winter, again, start slow. Also, add some strength training into your routine. We must train our upper bodies (and lower body) to be strong and support us in the movement we choose to do.
- Stretch – yoga is an excellent way to work on your flexibility. If you don’t have time for yoga, you can stretch. If you need advice on stretching or strength training, contact me to be put in touch with professionals in your area that specialize in this.
- Hydrate – yes, drink your water. Here in Colorado, we have to drink more of it. Aim for half your body weight in ounces of water. Yes, this may seem like a lot but it will help with your energy. And it helps with weight loss. Many people don’t know that dehydration can cause you to feel hungry and thus, eat more.
- Finally, visit your local chiropractor to make sure your alignment is in order. I always tell people, if your brain isn’t communicating properly (via your nervous system) with a certain part of your body, take your glutes for example, you can do squats all day long but without proper nerve supply, you won’t build that muscle. In this office, we offer complimentary consultations to see if we can help you and if we can’t, we will give you a good referral to someone who can.
Yours in Health, Dr. Mandy