Pain sucks. Whether it’s from an injury, muscle use or aching joints, pain is one of the biggest obstacles to maintaining a regular workout routine. And while it’s always important to rely on medical advice and seek out the help of your doctor, minor pain usually shouldn’t get in your way.
Often you just need to take a bit more time or explore an alternative route when knee pain threatens to keep you sedentary. I have some quick tips to help you out!
- Explore non-impact exercise: When’s the last time you swam laps? Do you have access to a spin class? How about a trampoline? There are a number of non-impact exercises that are joint-friendly and actually can alleviate some minor aches and pains.
- Cross-train: Far too many of us stick to the same exercises, which can lead to overtraining injuries and breakdown of cartilage. Many orthopedic surgeons and rehabilitation specialists recommend cross-training—participating in an array of sports/exercises to give your body a more well-rounded workout and keep certain pains at bay.
- Lift weights: Getting stronger and building up the muscles that surround your joints is a fantastic way to keep pain from getting in your way. When you lift weights, you help build a “fortress” of support around the areas of your body that get rather cranky (back, knees, shoulder, and ankles).
- Switch your diet: If you want to keep pain from getting in your way, never overlook your diet! Research demonstrates major anti-inflammatory and pain-fighting benefits from cleaning up your diet and adding foods rich in fiber and healthy fats.
- Yoga anyone? When you improve your body’s ability to move and increase your overall flexibility, you’ll ward off future injuries and keep your joints happy. Flexibility helps boost blood flow and improves your body’s ability to withstand impact, too!