It’s that time of year when we at Paul S. DeMarco, DPM see many patients with foot injuries and podiatric problems caused by improperly executed exercise programs. While the New Year may bring a desire for a new, more physically fit you, it’s important that you invest the time and effort in an appropriate exercise routine and properly prepare for the activity you choose. Failure to do so may mean that instead of getting into better shape, you’ll be sidelined to the couch with a painful foot condition.
Here are 3 ways to avoid foot disasters with new fitness routines:
1. Choose the Right Shoes—many injuries from blisters and shin splints to heel pain and runners toe can occur if you are wearing the wrong shoes for your sport or if your shoes do not fit properly. Make sure the shoes you are using are designed specifically for the exercise you plan to do. If you already have shoes, check to see that they are not stretched out, have holes or loose stitching or showing other signs of wear. If you are buying new shoes, get your feet measured by a fitness footwear professional.
2. Don’t Neglect Stretching—you can prevent inflammation and irritation to the muscles and tendons of the lower leg, foot and ankle by taking the time to warm up and stretch before and after exercising.
3. Pick a Safe Program—Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis and even stress fractures are the prize awarded to people who choose an exercise plan that leads them to do too much too soon. You should always start out slowly, especially if you have been inactive for a period of time. Gradually increase the distance and intensity of your exercise activity. It’s a good idea to take a day off in between workouts to give your muscles and tendons a chance to rest and recover. A quick start will most often end in a fast end to your fitness resolutions. Slow and steady really does produce long lasting results.
If you find that your new exercise plan is giving you a pain in the foot, ankle or lower leg, stop at once. Make an appointment at our Somers Point office so our podiatrist, Dr. Paul S. DeMarco, can evaluate your condition and make the appropriate recommendations for treatment or technique to prevent injury and get you back on track. Contact us today at: (609) 927-4894.