If you read my post last week you might feel more inclined to get out and WALK. This week I figured I would continue with that theme. Walking (well) is really the best movement that can be had.
If you aren't much of a walker, getting into the habit of it can be a bit challenging, feet may ache, hips may feel funny, these are all things that can happen when we begin to use our bodies in a way in which they are "unused" to being used. (does that make sense?). Here's the thing, there SHOULD be ease when we are walking, but if our bodies aren't properly aligned, (see last weeks post if you are curious about this) then things WILL HURT. Your feet may hurt a whole load if you aren't properly loading them, if your feet roll in as you walk, you will bring excessive tension to the outer areas of your low legs, this may hurt your knees, or further up the chain, your hips, if you keep walking like this. So what to do? Release the areas that need releasing, work on "stacking" the parts up one over the other very nicely and then start VERY slowly to get out and move. ALSO, get yourself OUT of positive heeled shoes. Even if you think they make you look fabulous. The long-term effects of them is terrible. Ideally we want to wear shoes that are the same level from front to back, shoes that have a flexible quality to them, especially around the fore-foot, and that have a wide toe box. Our toes "should" (ooh I know that is a loaded word) be the widest point on our foot.
One of the best things you can do is get in the habit of releasing your feet, - sit in a chair, or on the floor and put your fingers between your toes and stretch them out, find the space between each of your toes. If it's ok on your knees sit back on your heels with your toes tucking under and stretch out your toes, then do the same thing with the feet lengthening to stretch over the tops of your feet. NOTE, you can also do this in standing.
ALSO, stretch out those calves! Every day. In standing, elevate the front of your foot (you can use a rolled up yoga mat or blanket or get fancy and buy a calf stretcher which is a foam half dome) and drop the weight down through your heel and straighten your leg to lengthen the calf, specifically (with a straight leg) the gastrocnimeus.
Do these little releases every day. Add to the list, switch things up when you feel ready. If you are uncertain about any of these things, then just ask me about them when you come to class. I'll happily help you out with some guidance and pointers.
Many people find that walking on concrete is killer, and yes IT IS. So, walk on the grass beside the sidewalk, even better, get yourself onto some trails that are softer and move on them. Balance on logs, jump over streams.
I have been heading over to North Van on a regular basis with friends and family to go for walks, nothing major a few hours, but it really does a body good.
Above is our family walk last weekend at Cypress Falls in West Van. That is a picture of my daughter shortly after she fell into a creek. Then I saw a big burned out tree. There's so much to explore when you get outside and play. Enjoy. xo