Running is one of the top ways to keep your blood pumping and your veins healthy and strong. At St Johns VeinCenter, we support healthy lifestyle choices that can prevent varicose veins and spider veins in our patients.
Please keep in mind that running does not entirely prevent varicose veins as the pounding on the pavement with each step can be traumatic to veins. Also, heredity is a major contributing factor to varicose veins. If you had a parent with varicose veins, then you have a 33-50% chance of developing them as well.
9 Quick Tips for Running and Leg Health
With that in mind, we’d like to offer 9 Quick Tips for Runners to keep your legs and feet healthy:
- Cross training can keep your body strong and in balance. Maintain a well balanced work out plan for total body health.
- Rest to recover. Resting is an important part of training or active participation in any sport. Your muscles need rest to get stronger.
- Get the right running shoes for comfort and to prevent injury. Be sure to replace your running shoes regularly. Generally, at around 500 miles, your running shoes need to be replaced.
- Warm up before you run to minimize stress on your heart. Start your run with a brisk walk to warm up.
- Cool down after your run to allow your heart rate to decrease gradually and reduce stress on your veins.
- Drink at least 8ox of water before your run to ensure you are hydrated.
- Take a hot bath after your run to soak your leg muscles and relax them back into their natural shape.
- Raise your legs above your head by laying on your back with legs extended into the air for about 3-4 minutes each day to drain the blood out of your legs.
- Wear medical grade compression stockings or socks to increase circulation and blood flow, decrease muscle damage, and to recover more quickly.