Seniors: Look and Feel Great at Any Age

January 17th, 2020 by Sandra No comments »

While change is good, aging is a change that causes the body to crave more attention than it ever did before. What men and women could ignore at 30, 40 or even 50 has a way of demanding extra attention in later years.

To stay looking and feeling great, tweak your daily grooming habits and discover new products that align with the changing needs of your body. By doing so, you’ll preserve the healthy and energetic you for years to come.

Adopt a meticulous skin care regimen for your face and body. To keep skin looking its best, exfoliate once a week. Exfoliation removes dead skin cells that have a tendency to build up on aging skin. Removing old cells helps your skin absorb moisturizers and uncovers your natural, healthy glow.

Fend off itchy, dry skin by hydrating your body with moisturizers in the morning and at night and set up an in-home humidifier to add moisture back into the air, especially during the winter months. If your range of motion has diminished with age, try a roll-on lotion applicator with an extended handle to moisturize hard-to-reach areas.

Drink adequate amounts of water and eat healthy foods in smaller portions. Nutrient rich foods help ward off common health problems and increase your energy level while water keeps you hydrated and wards off daytime fatigue. Eating smaller, more frequent meals is reported to stabilize glucose and insulin levels, improve digestion and reduce heartburn.

Treat yourself to a pedicure on a routine basis and buy proper fitting shoes, boots and sandals. The right footwear offers a solid foundation and helps prevent falls. If you suffer from foot pain, heal pain, toe nail pain or any other foot condition that can’t be properly diagnosed and treated at home, visit your podiatrist. Using arch supports can provide relief for simple issues. They can be easily bought on Amazon, just like these orthotics.

Be a stickler when it comes to oral hygiene. Oral health is crucial in warding off gum disease which can impact insulin levels and contribute to heart disease and pneumonia. If arthritis or hand tremors inhibit brushing, try an electric toothbrush or an adaptive aid with a thicker grip and/or weighted base to enable you to perform daily grooming tasks independently.

Take care of your hair with regular haircuts and conditioners to keep it strong and healthy. If you notice your hair discoloring, ask your stylist to recommend hair care products that restore the silver, gray or white tone to your hair. Pollutants from the shower, swimming pool and even the air are known to cause hair discoloration.

Find more reasons to socialize and laugh. Studies prove that laughing enhances immune systems, lowers blood pressure and reduces tension among other things. Socializing brings you out of isolation which can cause depression and offers new opportunities for you to learn and experience new things at any age.

Start your new self-care regimen today. If you’ve been neglecting yourself and your body’s cravings, enhance your confidence by giving your body the attention it deserves as you continue to look and feel great at any age!

How to treat Plantar Fasciitis from Flat Feet

March 13th, 2019 by Sandra No comments »
insoles for flat feet

Are you experiencing persistent sharp stabbing or burning arch foot pain? Does it feel like someone is sticking a knife into the bottom of your aching foot? If this sounds painfully familiar then you probably have plantar fasciitis. Plantar fasciitis is the most common cause of pain in the heel and arch of the foot. It occurs when the large plantar fascia ligament on the bottom of the foot develops a tear which leads to local inflammation and arch foot pain. Because the plantar fascia ligament attaches to the heel on the bottom of the foot, plantar fasciitis also causes significant heel pain. If you spend a great deal of time on your feet it can be very difficult for the torn plantar fascia to properly heal.

How does this condition develop in the first place? The primary reason people develop plantar fasciitis is from excessive physical activity and exercise. Running, jumping or any activity that places repetitive stress on the plantar fascia can bring on arch foot pain. As a result, competitive athletes as well as couch potatoes are susceptible to this problem. Other contributing factors include wearing shoes with inadequate support or cushioning, being overweight, and having structural or mechanical foot problems such as flat feet or high arches.

In many cases the arch foot pain of plantar fasciitis can be successfully managed conservatively at home. For treatment to be successful it has to be carried out diligently on a daily basis or the arch foot pain will worsen and may be more difficult to treat in the future. The best way to begin treating plantar fasciitis is to start a stretching and strengthening program. To do this, stretch the bottom of your foot and your Achilles tendon for at least fifteen minutes twice a day. You can find many of these exercises outlined online. After completing your stretching routine, ice the bottom of your feet for as long as you can tolerate the cold. This will help reduce the inflammation of plantar fasciitis which, in turn, reduces arch foot pain.

For more pain relief, you can add an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory agent available from your local drugstore. Naproxen or ibuprofen products work equally well, as long as they’re taken correctly. To minimize stomach irritation, take them with food. If you have a history of an ulcer or a gastrointestinal bleed, consult your doctor first.

You may also want to purchase an orthotic arch support for your shoes. Samurai Insoles is an extremely reputable brand of insoles for plantar fasciitis but other choices are available. Samurai Insoles were invented by a a podiatrist for flat feet. His name is Dr. Thomas Lembo. He states the orthotics should provide arch support if you have lower arches or very flat feet which have helped to reduce the arch foot pain with his Manahawkin podiatry patients. Avoid walking barefoot on hard surfaces. For evening, consider buying a nocturnal foot splint from a durable medical equipment store or podiatrist office. This type of splint is designed to slip onto the foot with the arch foot pain. It places the foot in a slightly dorsiflexed position reducing the pressure and tension placed on the plantar fascia ligament. This should lessen some of the discomfort and allow the torn ligament to begin healing.

If you faithfully complete these steps on a daily basis for two to three weeks the arch foot pain of plantar fasciitis should improve. If you notice some improvement, continue these simple and inexpensive steps. Unfortunately if you notice no improvement then it’s time to see your doctor or even a podiatrist for a more thorough investigation.

Keep Your Feet in Good Shape as You Age

November 14th, 2016 by Sandra No comments »

Keep Your Feet in Good Condition As You Age


People rarely think about their feet until a problem arises, and they then realize how important good foot care is to everyday movement and overall health. As the years pass, feet can suffer more from poorly fitting shoes, neglect of nails or systemic diseases that affect circulation in the feet. You can keep your feet healthy by giving them specific care, and keeping up with your podiatrist, as part of your total health care regime.


Arch Problems

Arch problems are common in people over the age of 40.  The effects of gravity, combined with weaker muscles combine to cause pain in heels, within arches or at the top of the foot. Arch supports can help to reduce the discomfort from heel and arch pain. Special exercises for the foot can also help to strengthen muscles and improve flexibility. If necessary, a podiatrist, a doctor who specializes in foot diseases, can create an orthotic corrective device specifically for your feet.


Bunions are bony growths that generally occur at the base of the big toe on the inside of the foot. They are caused by the continued rubbing of this area of the foot against the inside of the shoe. Bunions can occur at any age but usually worsen as people get older. They may be very painful because they receive the weight of the foot with each footstep. Bunions often run in families because of the structure of the foot. Women may be more prone to developing bunions because they often wear shoes with pointed toes. Splints, pads or specially designed shoes may be necessary to correct bunion problems. Surgery may be done as a last resort to deal with chronic pain.


Hammertoe is a condition in which the middle joint of the toe becomes bent into a curled position. It is caused by ill-fitting shoes and the rubbing of the upper part of the toe against the inside of the shoe. Hammertoes may be fixed or flexible. Pain medications, properly fitting shoes and custom-fitted orthotics may be necessary to treat this condition. Surgery may be needed to remove small sections of bone to re-align the toe.

Nail Problems

Ingrown nails occur when the sides of the nail curl and puncture the skin around the nail. This can cause extreme pain and disability in walking. To treat the problem, soak the foot in warm water and carefully trim the nail straight across. Keep feet and nails scrupulously clean. If necessary, see a doctor to treat infections that may occur. Nail fungus is another problem that can cause yellowing, flaking and thickening. Fungus of the toenails can be unsightly and can cause social embarrassment. Topical anti-fungal medications, oral medications and laser treatments can help to eliminate nail fungus problems.

Diabetes Foot Care

If you have been diagnosed with diabetes and take medications to regulate your blood sugar, your physician may also advise you on proper foot care. People with diabetes are particularly prone to foot problems that can lead to serious medical problems. Your doctor may check your feet at each visit to ensure good circulation.  Keep your feet and nails scrupulously clean. Wear socks and shoes at all times to protect your feet. Don’t smoke, because it affects blood flow to the extremities. Consult your doctor about cuts that won’t heal, rashes, infections or any other problem with your feet.

Regular Foot Care

Taking the time to give your feet the care they require can go a long way toward keeping them healthy and functioning well.


  • Wash and carefully dry feet after bathing.


  • Integrate nail care into your daily grooming routine.


  • Only wear shoes that fit well and provide the right support for your needs.


  • See a podiatrist about foot problems before problems become worse.


  • Use orthotic devices when necessary.


  • If you are diabetic, see your physician about wounds, rashes or other problems with your feet as soon as possible.

Fitness After 40

October 7th, 2015 by Sandra No comments »


flat footed cyclist

The quest for physical fitness does not end with the onset of middle-age. Your 40th birthday is not a harbinger of declining strength and fitness. The truth is, exercise is more important after age 40 than ever before.

But your body changes as you age and your fitness training must change with it. Adapting your middle-age fitness training program to your body’s changing needs enables you to maintain or improve your fitness as you navigate through your 40s, 50s, and beyond.

Here are some ideas for training effectively in your 40s:

Take More Time to Warm Up: Aging makes you more susceptible to injury. It also increases injury recovery time. The last thing you need is a pulled hamstring, a torn pectoral, or a strained foot. Have you ever searched for the term “pain in heel“? Articles like this are plentiful for a reason! Flat feet can predispose you to injury as well.  Orthotics for flat feet, just like these, can be helpful.

Injury is most likely to occur during the first few minutes or reps of your workout. In middle-age, warming up properly is a critical part of your fitness program.

Warm up for a minimum of fifteen minutes before strenuous exercise, especially weight training. Start off with five minutes of gentle leg stretches, and follow that with five to ten minutes on the stationary bike, treadmill, or elliptical. Finish with some light range-of-motion movements. You can check out YouTube for some helpful videos and tips, just be sure to check with your doctor first.

Reduce the Weight and Increase Repetitions: Maintaining muscle mass in middle-age is not difficult, provided you train smart. That is the good news.

Here is the bad news: Training with heavy weights, as if you are a body-builder in his prime, is courting trouble. Though heavy iron may have built your body in your youth, it is likely to tear it down in middle-age. Training with less weight and higher repetitions allows you to maintain muscle mass while reducing injury risk. For additional muscle stimulation with little added risk, sustain the contraction at the peak of each repetition.

How much do you really care about your one- rep max deadlift, squat, or bench press? The smart answer is “Not at all.” Take some weight of the bar and avoid injuries.

Listen to Your Body: Take a day or two off when you are feeling achy, lethargic, or over-trained from previous workouts. You might have tried to push through the tiredness in the past, but after age 40 the smart move is to wait for a better day. Apply this rule to individual exercises as well. Use caution with your first few repetitions of each exercise. Do not continue the movement if something feels “off” that day.

Include Cross-Training in Your Workout Program: Weight-training alone is not enough to maintain optimal fitness. Alternate your workouts between weight training, flexibility, cardio, balance, and other forms of exercise. Try to reduce weight training to three days per week. You can still exercise on the other days, just vary your activity.

Mix it up when you are not weight training. Take a day to run hills or stairs. The next day use an Arc Trainer at varying inclines and resistance levels. Ice-skate or cross-country ski during winter months. Join a weekly basketball game. Visit a local facility that has a simulated rock-climbing wall. Take a yoga class. The possibilities are endless.

Vary Intensity of Cardio Programs: Use different types of equipment and vary levels of intensity of your cardio programs for varying lengths of time. One day do high intensity interval training (HIIT) on the treadmill for 30 minutes. The next day use a stationary bike for an hour of steady-state cardio. Mixing it up keeps your body guessing and avoids the pitfall of overburdening some muscles at the expense of others.

Additional factors beyond exercise play an important role in staying fit after 40. Proper nutrition and use of appropriate dietary supplements are vital to your continued fitness. Always consult a physician or nutritionist for advice on these matters.

Selecting the right shoes for walking

September 29th, 2015 by Sandra No comments »



All shoes are not created equally. If wearing the wrong type of shoe, you run the risks of having foot problems and even injury. There are shoes most ideal for certain surfaces as well as for low impact exercises. If you are an avid walker, it is important for you to find the right shoe for the job. Here is how to select the right walking shoes.

Know the arch of the shoe

Examine the arch. The arch of the shoe can be measured using a variety of methods. Step on a paper bag and see how much your foot protrudes. Depending on whether or not half or the entire arch is seen, your shoe should be selected accordingly. A wider arch means that more support is required. A higher arch requires a softer midsole. A person with a normal arch may not require as much support.  I’ve been pretty obsessed lately with outside of the foot pain after my latest sports injury.  Foot doctors claim insoles in your shoes can help this type of pain.

Flexibility and the walking shoe

Consider the flexibility of your shoes. The perfect shoe promotes flexibility. Consider where the shoe is most flexible. Softer components in the shoe promote flexibility. The shoe should have the ability to flex in an upward direction while the heel should have substantial support. There should be little give in the twisting motion in the front portion of the shoe. The foot should have no problem flexing as your foot moves from heel to toe during a step taken.

Heel support in walking shoes

Make sure that you have the right level of support in the heel. Walkers require more support in their heel region because their stride puts most of the impact in the rear of the foot. A good walking shoe should have greater support in the heel area. The heel area should be relatively flat in a good walking shoe. The heel should never be flared because it doesn’t provide adequate support for the heel.

Walking form and the shoe

Pay attention to your walking form. Some runners may be prone to what’s called overpronation. This may require that a person begin wearing shoes especially design to restrict motion on impact with each step taken. Overpronation is common among overweight runners. Shoes especially designed for walkers with this problem need support to prevent the foot from striking the ground incorrectly.

Find the correct shoe size

Know the size of your foot. Any type of shoe used in exercising should be slightly larger than the person’s regular shoe size. Experts recommend that the shoe size be one-half size larger than the nature shoe size to give the person room. There should be ample wiggle room for the toes in the shoe area.

When trying on walking shoes, it’s best to wear socks to evaluate the amount of space in the shoe.  Here’s a great video about how to buy socks.  Finding the right shoe may take testing out a few shoes. In some cases, one may have to go to a specialty store especially designed for people with foot problems and needs. Finding the right shoe makes it easier to maintain an exercise routine without sustaining an injury.

Is it Better to Run Outdoors or on a Treadmill?

September 22nd, 2015 by Sandra No comments »

running with foot pain


Many of us are becoming more health-conscious, and are aware that we should be doing some exercise as well as eating properly. As a result, treadmill use has increased significantly over the last decade. It is the most popular type of gym machinery, and many people even have a treadmill in their homes.

However, there is a quite a lot of discussion regarding the potential risks of using a treadmill. Some runners feel that it is better to run outside, while others appreciate the kind of exercise that a treadmill facilitates. This article examines the pros and cons of using a treadmill versus running outdoors.

Risk of basic injuries

One of the most common treadmill injuries is actually the result of a lack of common sense: stepping off the treadmill while it is moving. Whether you want to fetch a drink of water or change the TV channel, you should always stop the treadmill running belt before stepping off and on. Many of those who fail to do so have slipped and done some serious damage to themselves. There is also a risk of getting your hand or fingers caught in the narrow space between the moving belt and the machine itself.

Running outdoors does not entail such risks as there is no complicated machinery involved; however, there is always the possibility that you might stumble and fall onto the hard pavement, which can be just as dangerous.

Finding an appropriate running speed

Using a treadmill, it is important to find a speed that it most suitable for you. If you set the speed too low, you are likely to run with shorter steps, risking stumbling or causing pain in your calves. Setting the speed too high, however, can also be problematic, as it puts your muscles and joints under too much pressure to keep up.

Outdoor running has the advantage here because you tend to run at your “natural” speed. You can go faster or slower depending on how your legs and body feel, whereas on a treadmill changing speed will involve adjusting the program, which can be difficult to get right.

Potential damage to knees

Running of any type is potentially troublesome for our knees. Knees are a notoriously complicated and delicate part of the body, and they act as the main “shock absorber” between our body and the surface we run or walk on. If your thigh muscles aren’t strong enough, the tendons and ligaments that run through the knee will be put under additional pressure. This can eventually lead to “runner’s knee”, in which a constant, dull pain is caused by cartilage grinding against the kneecap.

While the risk of damage to knees is common to both treadmill and outdoor running, most treadmills come with built-in shock absorption systems, which reduce the pressure felt by the ligaments. In contrast, rough outdoor terrain increases the impact on the runner’s knees. In my area, Dick’s Sporting Goods often has treadmills with a nice amount of shock absorption on sale throughout the year. Orthotics can also reduce some shock absorption while running.

Overcoming boredom

This final point is entirely subjective, and requires the runner to think carefully about the type of environment in which they prefer to run. Running outdoors is less monotonous: there is changing scenery, fresh air and the opportunity to vary your route. Although running outdoors requires greater concentration in order to maintain a consistent pace, many runners attest to the sense of freedom it gives them.

Running on a treadmill involves remaining in a confined space, with little stimulation. There is no fresh air, and the sensation of constantly pounding on a rubber belt can become very boring. However, many people prefer the fact that a treadmill sets the pace and challenges you to keep up, meaning that unconsciously slowing down is not a possibility, as it would be outdoors. Running on a treadmill absolves the runner of having to find a suitable running route, and the controlled indoor environment means that variables such as weather and temperature do not have to be considered.


Running, whether on a treadmill or outdoors, carries the risk of injury at all times. The treadmill may have the advantage in terms of helping to prevent damage to the knees, but factors such as the pace and incline settings must be carefully considered, lest you do damage to other parts of your body. Running outdoors has the benefits of a varied route and fresh air, but it may not always be easy to find a viable running path, and the weather can be an unpredictable hazard. Ultimately, runners should weigh up the factors that they consider to be most important in their exercise regime, and decide accordingly.