Strengthen Your Feet To Improve Your Performance

While our feet are the base of nearly every physical activity we do, they are often overlooked when it comes to exercising. We train our arms, backs, legs, abs…so why not our feet? If our feet are in better shape, we have better balance, we can run faster, we can jump higher and we have better endurance. So what are some ways we can exercise our feet, you may ask? Check out my suggestions below. Always be sure to start small and work your way up to more reps, you don’t want to injure your feet from jumping in too quickly.

  1. Go Barefoot: Removing your shoes and walking barefoot whenever possible is important to allow your feet to move naturally. Some simple toe raises on bare feet can help to improve balance and muscle tone.
  2. Walk On Uneven Surfaces: Walking on smooth rocks or sand barefoot can help your body tune its sense of balance. Learning to adapt to its surroundings is good conditioning for your feet. Plus, activating the nerve endings on the bottom of your feet can help with lower back pain (the nerves are connected).
  3. Foam Roll Your Feet: Using a soft foam roller, roll the medial, transverse and lateral arches of your feet. It’s critical to relax muscle tension in all 3 aspects of the foot to prevent stiff muscles and improve flexibility. Standing with a foam roller, begin by rolling your lateral (outside) arch, then your transverse (center) arch, followed by your medial (inner) arch. Be sure to roll them in this order to avoid injury and optimize results.
  4. Reflexology massage: Reflexology massage is a great way to release unwanted tension in your feet as well as improve your overall health in other areas of your body. Ensuring your feet aren’t harboring any tension is critical for good balance and performance.

Incorporating these simple techniques into your daily regimen will help strengthen your feet, which can in turn improve your athletic performance, including speed, balance and power.

DISCLAIMER:  The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional.  You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.

Primary Foods…What’s Eating You?

One of my favorite concepts I learned while attending IIN is the idea of primary foods. Nutrition is actually our secondary source of energy. Primary foods, or non-food sources of nourishment, are what really fuel us as human beings.

As children, we all lived on primary food. Lovers thrive on the pure bliss and peace they are experiencing, while passionate entrepreneurs are fueled by their work. The excitement and rapture of daily life can feed us more completely than any food.

Imagine children playing outside with friends. At dinnertime their mother calls to them, “Time to come in and eat!” “No mommy, I’m not hungry yet,” they respond. At the table, the mother dutifully ensures that the children leave no morsel behind. The children reluctantly force down the minimum requirement, eager to get back outside and play.

At the end of the day they return, exhausted and satisfied. They quickly fall asleep without thinking about food at all.

Can you remember being deeply in love? Everything is light and warm, colors are vivid, and life is full of joy. You’re high off your lover’s presence, sustained and exhilarated by the blissful connection. You float on air, and food becomes secondary.

Think back to a time when you were involved in an exciting work project. You believed in what you were doing whole-heartedly and felt confident and stimulated. Time stopped, and the outside world was muted – food was an afterthought.

Now recall a time you were depressed or experiencing low self-esteem – you were starving for primary food. No matter how much you ate, you never felt satisfied. The need for love, power, or mere acknowledgement drove the desire for excess food.

Primary food goes beyond the plate, nurturing us on a deeper level. The four main primary foods are:

  • career
  • relationships
  • physical activity
  • spirituality

The more primary food we give ourselves, the less we depend on secondary food. On the contrary, the more we fill ourselves with secondary food, the less space we leave for primary food – our true source of nourishment.

Many religions and cultures practice fasting to reduce secondary food, opening channels to receive a greater amount of primary food.

Take some quality time to explore your personal balance between primary food and secondary food – which area could use some attention?

DISCLAIMER:  The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only.  The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional.  You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.