It’s getting towards the end of winter, and time to start thinking about coming out of hibernation. Not in the literal sense of course, most of us have still been working long days, taking children to school and sporting events and socialising with whatever energy is left.
What most of us don’t do through winter however, is maintain good exercise routines, stretch often and take care of ourselves physically. Rainy and cold days often provide a good excuse not to go out for that walk, and the dog is often just as happy to stay inside as you are.
Now that the days are beginning to get a little longer and there is light at the end of the proverbial tunnel is a great time to muster up some motivation to start back into exercise. Just a few tips before starting back into exercise though.
- Stretch before starting your new exercise
If you are thinking about starting exercise to prepare yourself for the coming summer and beach days, start to stretch NOW. By starting your stretching routine a week or two before your exercise routine you can help with a little flexibility and mobility. As an Osteopathy often seeing patients in South Morang, Doreen, Diamond Creek and Greensborough – I frequently need to suggest stretching programs. These aren’t special exercises that you can only learn when coming for an appointment, they are often the basics you’ve learnt in school. Stretching your legs for activities that require walking/running. Stretching shoulders for people who are stuck behind a desk etc.
- Start gradually/slowly
Most people have been struck with sudden motivation to exercise. Running is a great example: First you go out and buy new runners (or dust off the runners you’ve gotten from the last time you started running). Next perhaps you download a running app on your phone so you can track distance and time. Mentally you plot out your course and typically overestimate your fitness levels so will aim for a 3-5km round trip. On goes the shoes, out the front door and away you run. You might get to the end of the 500m – 1km before breathing like a wounded animal and having to stop running for a breather, before starting off again just before you fully regain your breathe.
If this is anything like you in the past, perhaps this year try to start a bit slower, walk for the distance you plan to jog, and slowly increasing your pace with some rest days in-between walks/jogs/runs.
Very frequently jumping head first into a challenging running program will result in injury, time off exercise and perhaps a need to visit your local Osteopath.
- Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated.
Winter and dehydration can often go together. Feeling cold in your body doesn’t often kick up the thirst drive like it does in the middle of summer and getting in the 1.5-2.5 Litres a day can be very challenging. Often when you are sedentary while working it may not be a major issue, however when you start exercising and sweating this mild dehydration can lead to increased aches and pains, headaches and poor recovery.
Exercising without adequate hydration is like running your car without oil. Don’t be that person!
If you want to discuss anything written feel free to contact Good Health Osteopathy Diamond Creek
Dr. Luke Richter (osteopath)
Good Health Osteopathy
5B 329-347 Diamond Creek Road,
Good Health Osteopathy – Quality health care commonly servicing patients from Diamond Creek, Greensborough, Doreen, and Eltham