The Whole Foot: Blog

The Do’s and Don’t's of Weight Loss When Your Foot Hurts

What this article discusses:

  • Simple, effective ways to loose weight even when your feet hurt.
  • Common sense weight loss tips that seem to get forgotten
WholeFoot, Real Solutions for Serious Foot Pain

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Weight gain and foot problems especially plantar fasciitis/heel spurs often coincide.  Not only does plantar fasciitis/heel spurs occur more often in people who are heavier than they should be, it seems to be very common when weight is gained, even if the weight gain does not particularly shoot you into the “obese” category.

Weight loss is, as a result, an important part of the treatment of plantar fasciitis and other foot problems.  While it is not possible to immediately drop 20, 30, or 40 lbs., it is possible to make a real difference that you feet will respond to within one or two months by following some simple common sense tips.

1.  Don’t starve yourself.  Over the billions of years that we have evolved, your body has developed effective means of making sure that you get adequate nutrition.  When it senses that you are starving, it will make you keenly aware of this and pester you until you stop starving.  Absent some psychiatric condition, you cannot starve yourself thinner.

2.  Do make some real efforts to monitor your food choices.  Peter Drucker said “What gets measured, gets managed.”  Keeping track of your food choices and how they “cost” you in caloric terms can be a real education.  Whether you’re sticking to your diet or being less than compliant, record what you eat and weigh yourself weekly.  Avoiding the binge foods, foods that are high in empty carbohydrates such as potatoes, rice, bread, and sweets can be very helpful.  Baked or grilled chicken breast and fish are high protein foods that are capable of quelling your hunger until the next meal.  Avoid situations where you know that you have difficulty.

There are many great apps that have been developed to make this fun and incredibly easy.  Most have huge indexes of food to select from including name brands, restaurantes, etc.  Some even have the ability to scan UPC codes to identify brands, caloric values and portion sizes instantly.  Eating healthier has never been more easy and educational.

3.  Don’t put it off.  Start now, not at some faraway goal.  Commit toward eating better and exercising regularly.

4. Do exercise regularly.  An appropriate form of aerobic exercise exists for everyone.  Aerobic and anaerobic exercise increases your metabolism, conditions your muscles and improves flexibility–All things that are key to healing your foot problem.  Reasonable types of exercise include:

A. Upright or recumbent bicycle

B. Elliptical Jogger

C. Stair climbing devices

D. Rowing machines

E. Sitting weight calesthenics

F. Swimming

Find one that does aggravate your foot and work up to 30 minutes or more a day!  Make it a priority!

5.  Don’t go it alone.  People who are trying to lose weight especially with obstacles need company, support, and encouragement.  It is easy to drift into despair when things aren’t progressing like you expect and there are going to be ups and downs along the way.

6.  Do look for a friend who can help.  Getting a friend that wants to help or needs to lose weight also is the best way to stick to the plan.  A friend that cares about you and is interested in seeing you succeed is a crucial part of attaining your goals in terms of your foot and your weight.

7.  Don’t make losing weight another thing to stress over.  Stress is a diet killer.  People under a lot of stress whether it is at home, at work, with your spouse, or because of medical conditions are more impulsive than people who minimize stress.

8. Do minimize stress in your life. Think about your life and the things that stress you out about it.  Are there ways that you can eliminate the stress?  Are there ways that you can stress out less over the things that you can’t change?  If you are having problems with this, get a therapist to help you or talk about it with a caring friend who give good advice.  Sometimes an outside perspective can help put things in order.  The solutions are often simpler than you might suspect.

9.  Don’t expect it to be over after you’ve acheived your goals.  Too many weight loss programs go in reverse after the pounds come off.  If you go back to your old habits, sitting in front of the television or computer, back to the old foods that you miss so much, before you know it, you’ll be back to your old weight.

10.  Do realize that this is a life long journey.  Exercise and healthy food choices are an every day challenge.  You have to stay away from people and places that challenge you.  You will tend to drift back into the food habits of the people around you over time.

There is nothing special about the newest diet fads.  Obtaining a healthy weight is as easy as making the right choices regarding your food and activity everyday for the rest of your life.  It is a habit that you must develop over time.  It is not easy or fast but it is absolutely sure to be successful.  Start now.  If your feet hurt, don’t wait for them to stop.  It is a part of your foot recovery, not a goal to be put off until the stars align and everything is ready.

Get started NOW!