November is Men’s Health Month and it’s something some men hate talking about; but it’s important! One way for men to practice a healthy lifestyle is to get active. Being fit and in shape can help many aspects of your life. Whether it’s physically or mentally, the benefits of working out are endless.
According to Dr. David Myer, OrthoIndy foot and ankle specialist, “Weight bearing exercises, like walking and weight lifting, are an important part of maintaining bone health and density, especially as we age.”
However, that doesn’t mean men should just hit the gym and pump some iron, maybe jump on the treadmill and then head home. Work outs should always include some stretching as well.
Light stretching before a workout can help prevent injuries and help improve blood flow to your muscles.
“Calf stretching is the quickest and most effective way to treat and prevent common foot and ankle problems in active individuals,” said Dr. Myer. “A quick calf stretch can prevent plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis.”
Should you stretch before or after your workout? There are a lot of different opinions about this matter. A light stretch before is important, nothing too intense. But stretching after is important as well; after a workout your muscles are warm so it will be easier to get a better stretch.
“There are different stretches for before and after your work outs,” said Dr. Myer. “The activity you are doing also plays an important role. If you are doing upper body weight lifting, it’s important to loosen up your upper body before and stretch afterwards as well.”
Stretching can also help you relax physically and mentally. Take your stretching minutes to unwind, focus on your breathing and concentrate on yourself.
“It’s not so much when you do it or why you do it, but just doing it at all. We all want to cut the workout short to get home, get on with our day or we tell ourselves we will stretch later and we never do. Take five to ten minutes and stretch your muscles out and have some time to yourself,” said Dr. Myer.
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Myer please call 317.884.5174.