Try to keep your level of activity consistent from day to day, especially with walking and running. For instance, do not walk 5 miles one day and then not walk for 4 days in a row. Instead, try to walk 1 mile each of the 5 days and spread it out, providing your feet with more rest breaks in between. You should also try to vary the type of activity you do each day like rowing or biking to mix things up. Exercise and walking are still good for you, but in the right dosage.
Stretch your calf muscles and massage the bottom of your feet first thing in the morning which will help you to get moving more quickly with less pain. Improving your flexibility early in the day will help prepare you for the day to come.
Put a golf ball in the freezer than you can use to massage the bottom of your foot on the ground. This is a good way to help relieve pain after a long day of walking and standing when you get home at the end of the day!
Single leg balance! Practicing balancing on one leg is an easy way to begin strengthening multiple muscles in the foot and ankle which will provide you with more support. This is one of the simplest exercises to add into your routine right away that gives you the most “bang for your buck.” You can easily perform this while doing dishes, folding laundry, watching TV, etc. Make sure you have something stable to hold onto if you need it! Come see your physical therapist at Live to Move for additional exercises more tailored to your specific needs!
(For any other questions you have about PF, please see our additional blogs and videos)
Like many other major life changes, you will have more success when making the change from your current way of eating to plant based. If you are a person more set in your ways with eating, then you may need to start with cooking one plant-based meal a week. Others may do better with having one full day a week where they eat fully plant-based. You may even need to start by cutting out meat from these meals first before dairy if you tend to eat a very animal-based diet. This is a process that cannot happen easily overnight. It is best to let your brain and body adjust to a new way of eating. Give your taste buds a chance to accommodate to new foods!
Surround yourself with support-
Again, like any lifestyle change, you will have more success if you surround yourself with a support system of others who also eat plant-based. This could involve online groups where you can share recipes and tips as well as encourage one another. Eating plant-based has gained a lot of traction in recent years and you will find a lot more people who are also eating this way as well as restaurants that are fully plant based or at least have plant-based options. Encouraging your family and friends to join you on your journey can also be very hopeful since you will have someone to cook and eat the same foods with!
Live to Move offers nutritional counseling centered around a plant-based whole-food diet, which is also a great way to have someone hold you accountable and support you through the change!
Knowledge is power, and gleaning information about what a plant-based diet is and what it can do for you is limitless. Watching documentaries and reading books and current research regarding the physiologic benefits of whole food plant-based eating can be a helpful tool. Learning about the ways in which eating plant-based can benefits the environment can be another strong motivating factor towards eating a more plant-based diet. You can start your knowledge journey by reading our website and scheduling an appointment with our certified nutritionist on eating whole food plant-based!
Arthritis is chronic inflammation of a joint, or multiple joints, which can cause deterioration of cartilage and other structural abnormalities over time such as bone spurs. Between 2013-2015, 54.4 million (22.7%) adults had physician-diagnosed arthritis, and 23.7 million had arthritis-attributable activity limitations. There are hundreds of different kinds of arthritis with various causes; the most common type is Osteoarthritis, followed by Rheumatoid Arthritis, and then Psoriatic Arthritis.
Osteoarthritis (OA): According to the CDC, Osteoarthritis affects nearly 32.5 million US adults, and is one of the most expensive conditions to treat when joint replacement is required. Joints that weight bear are most commonly affected, such as knees, hips, spine, and feet. OA can be caused by anything that put excess stress or “wear and tear,” such as injuries, obesity, or age. A sedentary lifestyle can also be a risk factor for OA.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA): RA is an autoimmune disease leading to inflammation of the joint lining causing pain, swelling, and stiffness which is often worse following rest. Wrists and hands are the most commonly affected areas, occurring symmetrically on both sides of the body. This type of arthritis can also cause overall fatigue and muscle weakness.
Psoriatic Arthritis: Psoriasis is another autoimmune disease initially presenting as a dry, flaky, red skin rash that can spread to the joints causing inflammation and swelling. Other symptoms include nail bed changes and general fatigue.
Diagnosis of Arthritis:
Arthritis is diagnosed through a combination of X-ray imaging, pattern of stiffness of the affected joint with rest and activity, as well as decreased function and range of motion.
How can physical therapy and physical activity help treat arthritis?
Addressing muscle imbalances and strengthening surrounding musculature can decrease the stress placed on the affected joint
Manual therapy can improve range of motion, decrease swelling and pain using soft tissue massage, traction, and joint mobilizations
Physical therapy can help to improve daily function, slow the progression of arthritis, as well as decrease the risk of arthritis in the future through preventative care.
Regular physical activity is an important strategy for relieving pain and maintaining or improving function in people with arthritis
Nearly half of adults with arthritis report no leisure time physical activity. Not being physically active is detrimental for arthritis and is a risk factor for other chronic diseases.
Regardless of the type of arthritis you are diagnosed with, the physical therapists at Live to Move can help you achieve your goals for the future and desired level of function
Barbour, K. E., Helmick, C. G., Boring, M., & Brady, T. J. (2014). Vital Signs: Prevalence of Doctor-Diagnosed Arthritis and Arthritis-Attributable Activity Limitation — United States, 2013–2015. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report,66(9), 246-253. doi:10.15585/mmwr.mm6609e1
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