Thursday, January 04, 2007

Leave It To Me

Yeah, I would be that girl who goes a long time without exercising, then after just a few days of doing some moderate walking gets totally sidelined by shin splints. Aaargh!

Last night, my legs were so sore I had a hard time sleeping. And today, my left leg - always my problem leg since I had a bad ankle sprain 20 years ago and now have tendonitis and a crampy calf - was a painful annoyance all day long. I just did a lot of reading on the Internets, and apparently it's a lateral shin splint based on where it is.

I'm pretty sure that after a day or so of resting, things will be fine, but it's a big reminder that I really do need to focus on stretching as a part of my new workout routine. You can't just jump on a treadmill or bike cold, cuz that way pain lies.

But the good thing is I just read about a great calf stretch that I've just spent the last 15 minutes or so doing, and it feels GREAT. Stand arm's length from a wall that you're facing. Plant your heels down on the floor and then lean towards the wall, bracing yourself with your hands. Bring your shoulders and then hips forward, keeping your back straight and your heels down. You'll feel it in both legs. Try bending your knees to stretch a different part of your calves.

Then, to really dig in deep, do the same stretch but only with one leg at a time. Keep one leg arms-length from the wall with the heel down, bring your other foot forward and bend that front knee while you lean into the wall with your upper body. Yowza - fantastic! After years of having a crampy, charley-horse-prone calf on my bad leg, I will be doing this stretch quite often!


TC said...

You may want to get more calcium. Things like shin splints and cramps often come because of low calcium intake.

Stef said...

TC - That's one of the things I'm tyring to work on, too - getting more vitamins this year. I take a daily multi-vitamin and I have also just gotten some extra calcium supplements. Thanks for the advice!