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Five Tips for Transitioning from the Treadmill to the Sidewalk

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With spring just over a week away, many runners are gearing up to take their cardio routine from the treadmill to the sidewalk.

While it’s exciting to “hit the road,” you may be a bit wary about transitioning your routine outdoors. But with a good pair of running shoes and some healthy preparation, we can help you get the most out of your outdoor run.

Please note: Running is a high-impact activity. If you’ve never run before, please consult a chiropractor/medical practitioner to ensure you won’t worsen any pre-existing conditions or cause injury to your joints.

Here are some tips to help get you started:

1. Warm up and cool down

Make sure you stretch before and after your run. Stretches are an essential part of your running routine to avoid injuries. Some important points to keep in mind:

  • Never stretch a cold muscle
  • Hold each stretch for a slow count of 30
  • Repeat twice on each side
  • Don’t overstretch—be comfortable
  • Don’t bounce when stretching

2. Pick a road or trail you are familiar with

When starting out, the last thing you want to worry about is getting lost. Before you lace up your sneakers, do some research: ask friends where they like to run, use online running forums to find popular routes, and check to see if your park has designated trails. The more popular and visible the trail, the better.

3. Wear the appropriate footwear

Adapt your shoes to your environment. A regular running sneaker works for the flat, predictable surface of a treadmill. But once you are outdoors, make sure the sneaker’s tread can handle the gravel, dirt roads, and slick trails. Runners should get a sneaker that supports the feet while having the appropriate sole to help maneuver and provide support over uneven surfaces.

4. Begin slowly

Running outside is more taxing on your muscles, joints and bones, making you more prone to injuries like shin splints. Start off with shorter distances on flat roads or trails. As your endurance improves, gradually increase your mileage and hill work.

5. Maintain a constant pace

Don’t feel compelled to push yourself to run at the same pace that you would on a treadmill. Start with moderate and comfortable pace that allows you to run safely, and gradually increase your speed over several weeks as your body allows.

If you’ve been running on a treadmill for a while, transitioning to the outdoors may take time. The mechanics of running on a stationary treadmill are different than running outside on an uneven surface. When in doubt, you can always talk to a member of our wellness team about how to improve your form and prevent/manage injuries.

At Pickering Village Chiropractic and Massage, we provide our patients with more than just chiropractic and massage therapy services, but also the know-how to build better personal wellness habits so you can be at your best for work or play, every day.

To book an appointment or learn more about the chiropractic and therapeutic massage therapy services available at our clinic, call 905-427-3202.

 

With content from the Canadian Chiropractic Association.

How to Treat Post-Workout Muscle Soreness

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If getting in shape or intensifying your workout routine was one of your resolutions for 2020, you’ve likely had your fair share of time at the gym these past few months.

Have you ever wondered why your muscles feel so sore after a workout?

One reason may be delayed onset muscle soreness, otherwise known as DOMS.

Occurring anywhere between 24 to 48 hours after you try a new activity or exercise, or increase your workout intensity, DOMS can reduce your range of motion and muscle strength. This muscle soreness is a sign that your muscles are adapting to new loads.

The lactic acid myth

You may have heard that delayed onset muscle soreness is caused by a buildup of lactic acid. But lactic acid only lasts in your muscles one to two hours after a workout.

Resistance training causes micro-tears of muscle fibres, drawing increased blood flow and inflammation to the area, even leading to mild swelling, which stimulates the pain receptors in the muscle tissue and makes them more sensitive to movement.

The muscle damage is temporary. As muscle rebuilds itself, it gets stronger and can handle heavier loads.

How to reduce the discomfort of muscle soreness

Although DOMS is a natural process that indicates your body is getting stronger, there are ways you can reduce your level of discomfort.

  1. More exercise may be the best way to ease the soreness. Do a gentle workout such as light cardio, stretching or yoga a day or two after an intense workout. Pick up the intensity once the pain is gone.
  2. Introduce new exercises over a period of one to two weeks to give your body time to adapt.
  3. Try longer warmups before your resistance training.
  4. Take an Epsom salt bath. Epsom salts are made from magnesium, which helps relax muscles and improve circulation.
  5. Mix up your routine. If you do leg exercises one day, work your arms and core the next. This gives each muscle group time to recover.
  6. Stay hydrated and choose your foods wisely. Remember to drink plenty of water and replenish your electrolytes with a balanced diet full of fruits and vegetables. Leafy greens and bananas are two excellent options.

How to tell if it’s more serious

There are a few indicators that your pain can be something more serious than DOMS:

  • The pain does not diminish after three days.
  • The pain is so severe that you cannot carry on with daily tasks.
  • The pain is so severe that your legs give out.
  • You experience major swelling, redness, discolouration, or intense cramping.
  • The pain is very sharp – this could suggest a sprain/strain.

If you are concerned about any of the above, your chiropractor can conduct a thorough assessment and offer non-pharmacological pain management strategies, stretches, or manual treatments. You will be referred to the appropriate medical professional if the cause of pain is out of scope of chiropractic care.

The chiropractic and massage therapy team at Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage help patients build better pathways to overall wellness, as well as relief from back pain and muscle aches. Poor habits and injury can lead to pain that can restrict your ability to work or enjoy your leisure time.

We provide you with more than just chiropractic and massage services, but also the know-how to build better personal wellness habits so that you can be at your best for work or play, every day. Contact our clinic today at 905-427-3202.

 

 

With content from the Canadian Chiropractic Association

How to Combat Upper Back Pain Caused by Too Much Screen Time

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Have you been spending more time inside these past few months? And if so, has that meant more time on your laptop or mobile device?

Extra Screen Time Takes Its Toll on Your Body

As we head ever so slowly through the cold days of February, it’s not surprising that the time we spend inside on our electronic devices spikes dramatically. But if you go home after a long day at your desk only to crouch over your laptop, you may find that all the extra screen time is taking a toll on your body.

In our previous posts, we discussed how poor desk posture often increases your risk of developing neck, shoulder and back pain. Sitting for long periods of time, repetitive movements and awkward seating positions may lead to pain and discomfort long after you’ve left your desk or closed your laptop.

Pectoralis Minor/Major Stretch for Upper Back Pain

In the second video of our series addressing improper desk posture, registered massage therapists Jessica Raedisch and Rolf Castanheiro demonstrate the pectoralis minor/major stretch.

Incorporate this stretch into your daily routine if you suffer from upper back pain caused by rounding your shoulders while sitting at a desk or in front of an electronic device.

For more helpful videos from the chiropractors and massage therapists at Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage, visit our YouTube channel.

Heads up! Stop looking at your screen whenever you can. 

Don’t be a slave to your desk. Get moving and enjoy doing the things you love. Your body will thank you for it!

To learn more about how regular chiropractic and massage therapy care can help you maintain better posture, contact the Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage Therapy Clinic at 905-427-3202.

Try This Stretch for Headache Pain Caused by Improper Desk Posture

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woman suffering pain in her neck sitting in front of laptop

Have you been spending more time at your desk lately?

As we make our way through these cold February days, it’s only natural to enter hibernation mode. But if you go home after a long day at your desk only to crouch over your laptop, you may find that all the extra screen time is taking a toll on your body.

In our previous posts, we discussed how poor desk posture often increases your risk of developing neck, shoulder and back pain. Sitting for long periods of time, repetitive movements and awkward seating positions may lead to pain and discomfort long after you’ve left your desk or closed your laptop.

Suboccipital Stretch for Headache Pain

In the third video of our series addressing improper desk posture, registered massage therapists Jessica Raedisch and Rolf Castanheiro demonstrate the suboccipital stretch.

Incorporate this stretch into your daily routine if you suffer from headaches that originate at the back of your neck.

For more helpful videos from the chiropractors and massage therapists at Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage, visit our YouTube channel.

Don’t be a slave to your desk!

Get moving and enjoy doing the things you love. Your body will thank you for it!

To learn more about how regular chiropractic and massage therapy care can help you maintain better posture, contact the Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage Therapy Clinic at 905-427-3202.

8 Tips for Getting a Good Night’s Sleep

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How did you sleep last night? Really well? Not so great? If you did only manage to grab a few winks, how will it affect the rest of your day?

For many of us, there’s nothing better than a good night’s sleep. After a stressful day at the office or hours spent running errands with the kids, sanity can be restored with a solid night of restorative slumber.

But not getting the sleep you need? That may leave you feeling grumpy and tired all day, especially if irregular sleep patterns have become the norm.

Both your body and mind rest and refresh while sleeping making sleep an important aspect of your overall health.

If you’re finding it difficult to get enough sleep, try these tips for enhancing the quality — and quality — of your slumber!

1. Choose a good mattress

If you wake up with aches and pains that were not there when you went to bed, it may be time to get a new mattress. A good mattress supports the natural contours of the body, letting your muscles and joints fully relax.

2. Make sure you have the right pillow

The quest for a restful night’s sleep should always include a proper pillow. Keep in mind that your head weighs eight to twelve pounds. A good pillow provides comfortable support for your head, neck and upper back muscles so they can get some much-needed rest.

3. Sleep on your back or your side, not your stomach

Canada’s chiropractors recommend sleeping on your back or side. These positions allow your head, neck and spine to relax into their natural alignment. This reduces stress and strain on your muscles and joints that can disrupt your sleep and lead to aches in the morning.

4. Go to bed at the same time every night

Try to go to bed at the same time every night – even on weekends – to keep your sleep cycle in a regular rhythm. Avoid naps, but if you must, limit naps to less than 30 minutes, and be sure to have your siesta before 3:00 p.m.

5. Use common sense and wind down before bed

Avoid caffeinated beverages, heavy meals, alcohol and vigorous exercise within two hours of bedtime – they can all disrupt sleep.

6. Create bedtime rituals

Some people like a hot shower before bed while others like to listen to relaxing music, watch TV or read. These cues let your body know it’s time to prepare for sleep.

7. Let your body wake up with light

In the morning, open the curtains or blinds soon after you wake up. Bright light helps to regulate your natural biological clock.

8. Don’t just lie there…

If you can’t fall asleep after 30 minutes of tossing and turning, get up and do something boring in dim light until you feel sleepy. Try not to look at the clock – it may only make you feel anxious.

A good night’s sleep is just as important as regular exercise and a healthy diet, and vitally important to your long-term health and well-being. If you have continued difficulty getting a good night’s rest, chiropractic care and massage therapy may help. Contact our Pickering chiropractic and massage therapy clinic to make an appointment at 905-427-3202.

With content from the Ontario Chiropractic Association

Introduce Someone You Love to Chiropractic Care During Sweetheart Appreciation Week: February 10-15th, 2020

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In celebration of Valentine’s Day, Dr. John Noble and Dr. Mark Fera offer your loved ones, family and friends a complete chiropractic consultation and examination at our expense (a $150 value).

If your friends and family are suffering from neck, shoulder or back pain, fear of the unknown may be keeping them from enjoying the benefits of chiropractic care. If you’re a patient at our clinic, you understand what’s involved in chiropractic treatment. You have also experienced the positive change these treatments have had on your health.

Booking an appointment during Sweetheart Appreciation Week is the perfect way to introduce your friends and family to chiropractic care. There’s no fee and no obligation to begin care.

Below are the answers to a few questions your friends and family may have.

What is chiropractic care?

Chiropractic care is a profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system, and the effects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health. Chiropractic care’s emphasis is on manual treatments, which include spinal adjustments and other joint and soft-tissue manipulation.

Chiropractors are spine, muscle and nervous system experts. They are specifically trained to diagnose the underlying cause and recommend treatment options to relieve pain, restore mobility and prevent reoccurrence without surgery or pharmaceuticals.

What are the benefits?

Your musculoskeletal system supports your weight, provides physical stability, enables you to move your body, and protects your vital organs.

Benefits of chiropractic care include:

  • Improved movement in your neck, shoulders, back and torso
  • Better posture
  • Relief from headaches, neck and back pain
  • Prevention of work-related muscle and joint injuries
  • Enhanced athletic performance
  • Improved flexibility
  • Relief of pregnancy-related backache
  • Correction of gait and foot problems

What can I expect from my chiropractic treatment?

Chiropractic treatments normally consist of manual therapy, including joint manipulation, mobilizations and soft tissue therapy.

  • A manipulation (commonly known as an adjustment) is a quick, small thrust to the spine or other parts of the body intended to provide immediate pain relief and mobility.
  • Mobilizations are slower, more passive movements or stretches that help relieve stiff joints.
  • Soft tissue therapy refers to a variety of different techniques focused on alleviating discomfort without causing movement.

In addition to manual therapies, Ajax chiropractors Dr. John Noble and Dr. Mark Fera are trained to recommend a course of action that includes exercise, ultrasound or laser treatments, rehabilitation, nutritional counselling and injury prevention strategies.

Whether you are suffering from a specific injury to your muscles, tendons, ligaments and nerves, or you have a chronic condition such as spinal stenosis, osteoarthritis or inflammatory arthritis, Dr. Fera and Dr. Noble can help relieve pain and restore function in the following areas of the body:

  • Head and neck
  • Shoulders
  • Mid-back
  • Low back and pelvis
  • Elbows, wrists and hands
  • Hips, knees, ankles and feet

Are chiropractic treatments safe?

It is important to keep in mind that there is a difference between something being unsafe and having potential reactions. Any therapeutic treatment from medication to manual therapy comes with potential risk.

For example, there is a concept in the pharmaceutical industry known as a risk-benefit analysis which is used to assess how much benefit a medication has compared to the potential risk. The riskier the medication, the less likely it will become mainstream. Spinal manipulations should be recommended for patients when a similar risk-benefit assessment has been conducted. This assessment on the safety of chiropractic treatments is performed via the patient intake form and physical examination.

We have reserved a limited number of appointments during Patient Appreciation Week: February 10th – 15th.

To learn more or book your appointment, contact Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage today at 905-427-3202.

With content from the Canadian Chiropractic Association

Follow These Tips for Proper Snow Shovelling and Avoid Injury this Winter

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There’s snow in the forecast for Southern Ontario and while that means more chaos on the road for drivers, it also means more homeowners suffering from sore backs, as a result of improper snow shovelling.

“Shovelling out after a storm doesn’t have to leave you stiff and sore,” says Ajax chiropractor Dr. John Noble.

In this video shot last March (during one of our bigger snowstorms), Dr. Noble offers a few common-sense tips on how to shovel safely.

Just because we’re Canadians doesn’t mean we’re experts when it comes to shovelling snow! Follow these guidelines from the Ontario Chiropractic Association and with a little know-how, you can clear your driveway without any back, neck and shoulder pain ruining your day.

Before You Head Outside to Shovel

  • Drink plenty of water. Dehydration is just as big an issue in the winter months as it is in the summer.
  • Dress in several layers so you can remove a layer as you get warm.
  • Wear proper footwear. Shoes and boots with solid treads on the soles can help to minimize the risk of slips and falls.
  • Pick the right shovel. Use a lightweight, non-stick, push-style shovel. A smaller blade will require you to lift less snow, putting less strain on your body. An ergonomically correct model (curved handle) will help prevent injury and fatigue. Also, if you spray the blade with a silicone-based lubricant, the snow will slide off more easily.
  • Before beginning any snow removal, warm up for five to 10 minutes to get your joints moving and increase blood circulation. A brisk walk will do it.

Follow These Tips To Avoid Injury While Shovelling

1. Push, Don’t Throw

Push the snow to one side and avoid throwing it. If you must throw it, avoid twisting and turning — position yourself to throw straight at the snow pile.

2. Bend Your Knees

Use your knees, leg and arm muscles to do the pushing and lifting while keeping your back straight.

3. Watch for Ice

Be careful on icy walkways and slippery surfaces. Intermittent thaws and subsequent freezing can lead to ice building up underfoot, resulting in nasty slips and falls. Throw down some salt or sand to ensure you have a good footing.

If you’re experiencing back pain, consider a visiting the chiropractic and massage therapy team at Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage. We help our patients build better pathways to overall wellness, as well as relief from back pain and muscle aches. Contact our clinic today at 905-427-3202.

 

 

With content from the Ontario Chiropractic Association.

How to Avoid the Aches and Pains Associated with Text Neck

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There’s a good chance you’re reading this blog post from your handheld device, engaging in a serious but harmful position referred to as “text neck.”

With many of us spending about five hours every day looking at our phones, text-neck aches and pains have become quite an epidemic. Researchers at Harvard Medical Health predict that 7 out of 10 people will experience neck aches at some point in their lives.

What is text neck?

Text neck is a repetitive stress injury to the neck caused by holding your head in a forward and downward position for extended periods of time. While in this position, excessive amounts of tension are created in the deep muscles of your neck and across the shoulders causing both acute and chronic neck pain.

What does text neck do to your body?

Text neck compresses and tightens the muscle, tendon, and ligament structures in front of the neck while lengthening the muscles, tendon, and ligament structures behind the neck. Since the human head weighs approximately 10 pounds, for every inch your head is tilted forward, the weight your neck has to carry doubles and the strain builds up.

But since ditching our devices isn’t really an option, we can make sure to exercise right and practice good habits to prevent the aches and pains associated with text neck.

Follow these simple tips to avoid the aches and pains that come with the digital age. Your back and neck will thank you.

1, Take a break

Holding up your phone or tablet for extended periods of time can strain the muscles in your shoulders, arms and fingers. Let your arms rest at your sides every so often.

2. The 20-20-20 rule

Give your eyes a break! Every 20 minutes, take 20 seconds to look about 20 feet ahead (or as far as possible).

3. Change positions

Try to avoid sitting for longer than 30 minutes at a time. Get up and walk around!

4. Aim higher

Raise your phone up closer to eye level to reduce strain on your neck. When watching lectures on your tablet or laptop, be sure to prop it up against something so your shoulders and arms can relax.

5. Stretch it out

Slowly turn your head towards your left shoulder, hold for five seconds and repeat on your right side. You can also download Straighten Up Canada! — a free app developed by Canada’s chiropractors with videos of stretches you can do to help your posture in just three minutes!

The only thing that’s more important than “perfect” posture is movement. If you still have pain and discomfort after trying these tips, visit Ajax-Pickering chiropractors Dr. John Noble or Dr. Mark Fera to develop a plan to keep you pain-free.

Did You Know?

Bending your head to look at your phone can put up to 60 pounds of pressure on your spine!

pain caused by digital devices

A 2014 study in Surgical Technology International showed that even a 15-degree head tilt adds 27 pounds of pressure. As we use our phones and laptops more and more, that stress adds up!

Take care of yourself.

If you are concerned your posture is suffering due to increased time on your phone or digital device, contact the wellness team at Pickering Village Chiropractic and Massage.

We provide our patients with more than just chiropractic and massage therapy services, but also the know-how to build better personal wellness habits so you can be at your best for work or play, every day.

To book an appointment or learn more about the chiropractic and therapeutic massage therapy services available at our clinic, call 905-427-3202.

 

With content from the Canadian Chiropractic Association.

 

Resolve to Say Yes to Exercise in 2020

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Exercise New Year Resolution

Before the holidays are officially behind us, it’s time for one more tradition: setting our goals and resolutions for the New Year.

While many of us place weight loss, healthy eating and getting fit at the top of our to-do list at the beginning of each year, it can be easy to lose sight of our goals during the long winter months. After all, curling up with a good book or binge-watching a series on Netflix is much more enticing than heading out to the gym after a long day at work.

Aside from keeping your New Year’s resolution, there are a variety of reasons why you should make exercise a priority in your life. Here are a few important reasons for you to stay active:

Exercise helps relieve low back pain

Exercise has been shown to have a positive long-term effect on low back pain. Core strengthening exercises, especially, have been shown to be very effective in improving the function of your back.

Exercise improves bone health

Current evidence has shown that exercise can increase bone density and decrease the risk of falls and fractures in the elderly. Studies have also shown that exercise is comparable to medication in improving the day to day functioning of people with osteoarthritis.

Exercise helps prevent obesity

Obesity is often connected to the development of many life-threatening illnesses (e.g., diabetes or high blood pressure). There is strong evidence showing that exercise is important for preventing weight gain as well as keeping your body weight stable after you’ve shed some pounds.

Exercise helps improve your mental health

Physical exercise has been shown to have a positive effect in the long-term management of psychological symptoms, including depression, anxiety, schizophrenia, and chronic stress!

Exercise helps manage diabetes

Diabetes is a common illness affecting approximately 2.5 million Canadians, with over 200,000 cases being diagnosed every year. Researchers around the globe have all found that exercise is one of the pillars of managing diabetes along with diet.

Exercise prevents your risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease

Cancer and heart disease are the leading causes of death in Canada. There is more and more evidence showing that exercise can help protect you from developing cancer in the colon, breast, uterus, and prostate. Studies have also shown that exercise lessens your risk of developing heart disease because it helps reduce the amount of fats and cholesterol in the body (both play a role in damaging your arteries).

Exercise can help improve brain health

Studies have shown that individuals who exercise regularly have a decreased risk of developing dementia. Exercise has also been shown to improve balance and function in individuals with Parkinson’s disease.


The wellness team at Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage encourages you to improve your overall health by making exercise a part of your daily routine. If you want to learn more about managing your health with exercise, contact our clinic today at 905-427-3202.

 

 

 

With content from the Canadian Chiropractic Association.

How Will You Stay Active This Winter?

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family skating on frozen lake

As we prepare to officially welcome winter this coming weekend, it’s worth reviewing how our exercise habits will change once snow and ice become a daily occurrence.

It’s no surprise that when it gets cold outside, we tend to spend more time indoors doing sedentary activities and it can be difficult to stay active. If watching Netflix is how you spend your free time, you may want to schedule some more strenuous activity into your week.

Try planning your activities by setting aside time in your schedule — a few days a week — to make sure you’re getting the activity you need.

How much activity do you need?

To receive the health benefits from exercise, adults need a total of 2.5 hours of activity spread across the week, in bouts of ten minutes or more.

These activities need to be moderate-to-vigorous intensity aerobic activities. Moderate-intensity physical activities include brisk walking or bike riding. Generally, you know your activity is moderate-intensity if you sweat a little and breathe harder than when you’re moving about day-to-day. Vigorous-intensity activities include jogging or cross-country skiing, and you’re likely to find yourself sweating and feeling out of breath.

Here are a few tips to help keep you motivated to stay active during the winter months:

Plan activities ahead.

When activities are in your calendar, you’re less likely to forget them. Preparedness also helps set good habits.

Find a fun local activity, like snowshoeing, skiing, skating, or cross-country skiing.

Dress in layers. Insulate your body. When you can keep your body warm, it’s easier to continue being active outside.

Use your daylight hours.

It’s easier to stay outside while it’s still light out. It’s easy to miss out on activities when you start them too late in the day.

Find indoor activities at your local community centre.

This could be aerobics classes, badminton, basketball, or yoga classes.

Climb stairs.

Deliberately add more steps to your day. Consider going up and down a flight in your home, the mall, or an office building more than once over the course of your regular daily activities. As little as five minutes can make a huge difference for your health.

Go online to find more motivation.

There are plenty of free exercise videos you view online, including dance, step, aerobics, or Pilates.

Sign up for a fun run.

You can often find non-competitive “fun runs” in your community that are usually between 5 and 10 kilometres. You can invite friends and family to join in!

Find an activity buddy.

Find someone willing to commit to being active as often as you are, and set a plan. That could be planning to meet for morning walks or afternoon workouts. Having a friend keeps you accountable.

Stay hydrated.

Whatever your activity level is, remember to stay hydrated. It is easy to forget to drink water when it’s cold out, but your body needs just as much hydration in a snowstorm as it does in a heatwave.

Stay motivated.

Most importantly, stay motivated. Revisit your goals (or look for tips to set new ones) to make sure you’re still on track. Plan ahead and make sure you can envision your goal as you look ahead towards the finish line.

To get help on setting activity goals based on your specific musculoskeletal needs, ask your chiropractor about what activities are right for you.


The wellness team at Pickering Village Chiropractic & Massage encourage you to improve your overall health by making exercise a part of your daily routine. If you want to learn more about managing your health with exercise, contact our clinic today at 905-427-3202.

 

 

 

With content from the Canadian Chiropractic Association.