How can I lose weight when my feet are killing me? I cannot lose weight, my feet hurt! I cannot workout. My feet are all jacked up! I will not be able to get to my goals because of this injury!
These are all things we hear as personal trainers at O2 Fitness. Do you think you might have plantar fasciitis? Are you worried it will keep you from exercising? Are you concerned it will keep you from achieving your fitness goals? Do not fret, fitness family! At O2 Fitness we can get you to your goal and work around your pain. Spoiler alert! We might even help you get rid of that foot pain!
Do you wake up in the morning with chronic heel pain when you stand up out of bed? Does the pain dull over time, but every morning is the same struggle? Have you ever experienced stinging and burning sensations in your feet when you stand up, after sitting for an extended period? At O2 Fitness our professional trainers are prepared to help you hit your fitness goals and heal your body at the same time! Here are a few assessments and videos that we use at O2 Fitness to determine a course of action to help increase our clients and members foot health while helping them achieve their weight loss, strength, and health goals. Try these assessments and video resources below and if you have questions, request a free digital session demo with one of our professional trainers.
Stretching the Plantar Fasciitis
The first assessment we like to do looks at ankle dorsiflexion of ankle mobility. There is a certain amount of ankle movement that should be able to occur naturally. If your ankle is restricted from moving in certain ranges of motion, it puts you at higher risk for plantar fasciitis. Think of dorsiflexion as the ability of the knee to go in front of the toe. Specifically, it is the ability of the big toe to be pulled up towards your nose if you are seated or standing. Many studies show that limited ankle dorsiflexion is correlated to pain related to plantar fasciitis. Much of the restriction in dorsiflexion can come from a shortened Achilles tendon. It can also come from overstretched or tight plantar fascia (the Syrian wrap that holds everything in the bottom of your foot together and ties the bottom of your feet to rest of your body).
Here is one test we use to determine if there is an imbalance that could be causing pain.
- Get into a half kneeling position
- Place your front foot four inches from the wall
- Then try to move your front leg knee towards the wall
- Did you get your knee to the wall? How close were you? How many inches?
- Now switch legs and do the same assessment on the other side.
- Then ask yourself, did you get closer on one side compared to the other? Did you notice that the side that had the shorter range of motion is the same side as the foot with more discomfort or pain?
Another quick plantar fasciitis assessment we like to do to help determine if our O2 Fitness clients should work on their foot fitness is a standing static postural assessment. This test gives us quick feedback on the natural position of the ankle. We can usually see very easily if the ankle is pronated (collapsing inward). This is a key piece of information because studies have also shown that foot pronation is related to weak posterior tibialis muscles, weak glute Medius muscles, which can both lead to plantar fasciitis pain.
As a trainer for O2 it is our #1 responsibility to keep our clients safe while still helping them hit their goals. It is what sets O2 apart from our competition. In a club setting, I would sit down with Mrs. Jones for her complimentary program design session after signing up for her membership. Mrs. Jones tells me that she has foot pain and wants to lose 25 lbs. by the summer, for her daughter’s wedding. We then move Mrs. Jones through the assessments above along with some other measurements and questions about her likes and dislikes related to exercise and nutrition. We find that Mrs. Jones ankle mobility is poor, and she has an inward collapsing ankle in the standing position. Now we will design a weight loss program for her specifically. This plan will involve targeted foam rolling for the feet, stretching for the feet, and then isolation exercises for the feet. This will probably only be about 10-15 minutes of her 60-minute training session each day. We would also make sure that she is doing low impact cardio and strength training to help increase her calorie burn to support her weight loss goals. We would ask her to do the 10-15 minutes of corrective work each day if she can tolerate it. This will help her heal faster so that we can start programming in more challenging exercises for her so that she can lose more body fat more quickly and be wedding ready in “no-time.”
Here are some foot targeted foam rolling, stretches, and exercises we would do for potential plantar fasciitis:
If you have some weight loss, strength, or health goals that you haven’t been able to accomplish because of your foot pain you can schedule a free virtual session or free in person session with an O2 Fitness personal trainer. We will help you hit your goals and experience less pain doing it. Stop putting it off. It is time for you to be happy and see what you are capable of! We look forward to meeting you and helping you reach your fitness goals in one of our local O2 Fitness locations soon!