Orthopedic Tips for a Healthy New Year
Remote school and work has robbed many of us much of our seemingly insignificant daily movement. Walking to the store, taking the stairs, walking to the conference room, leaving the office to go to lunch — it all seems so 2019.
The new year brings ambitions for getting healthy. We agree, it’s time to get moving! And, we want to help you achieve your new year resolutions. The Sano Orthopedics Surgeon and Provider team has some tips to keep you on the right track for improving your health and preventing injuries along the way.
Dr. Stephanie de Vere reminds patients that eating right is an important part of weight loss. Especially when pain limits activity, we know many people can feel hopeless about losing weight. “Exercise is important but people shouldn’t feel like weight loss is impossible without being able to exercise,” says Dr. de Vere. Nutrition plays an important role in losing and maintaining weight.
New to “health” or maybe it’s been awhile since you’ve tried out the exercise thing. Jenna Batchelder, PA-C, reminds patients to “start small” as a little change can go a long way and lead to long term habits. Along these lines, Darren Quaile, PA-C, suggests an slow start to a new exercise routine.
Stretch it out.
As a stand alone exercise or part of a routine, “Stretching helps prevent injuries,” Dr. Kevin Witte says. Stretching also improves balance, flexibility, range of motion, and strength, to name a few.
Join a Gym.
Join a local gym. Many gyms offer specials this time of year and many have virtual options, too. Better yet, join with a friend. You’re more likely to stick to an exercise program when you join with someone. In this study, only 76% of those who started a weight loss program alone completed it compared to 95% who started with friends. This is why Jessica Cullen, PA-C, advises “Find a buddy” to hold you accountable and encourage you both. Sarah Comegys, PA-C, suggests joining a gym with an indoor pool. “Walking in pool water is a great way to get both cardiovascular exercise and strengthen [as you move against the water without injuring or jarring hips and knees]. Most gyms have recumbent bikes, which are great for heart and joint health.”
Choose consistency over intensity.
Dr. Matt Daggett points out that consistency will play a larger role in long-term health. Pick an activity you like, whether that be walking, dancing, hiking, playing soccer or whatever fits your lifestyle. “Movement is medicine” and being active has many health benefits now and later in life.
Strengthen your hip and core to prevent hip injuries.
Dr. Tim Roberts reminds patients that proper stretching and conditioning are helpful in preventing hip injuries like labral tears and pulled hamstrings. Strengthening your core can also help support hip and spine alignment.
Water, that is. Drinking more water is associated with both better weight management and joint health. Drinking water leads to overall reduced calorie intake when compared to drinking sweetened beverages. It also results in greater fat oxidation because it doesn’t trigger insulin release, Madison Schlenger, PA-C, says. Maintain healthy levels of hydration with eight 8oz glasses a day.