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Monday, 11 December 2017 21:26

Staying Active During the Winter

Staying Active During the Winter

Winter in Minnesota means less daylight, snow, ice and frigid temperatures. It's understandable that many of us want to stay indoors and hibernate. Thankfully, there are options for staying physically active during the winter. The key is to just keep moving and have a consistent schedule of activity.

Get Outside

Many communities in the Twin Cities offer outdoor recreation opportunities that are prefect for staying in shape. Try cross-country or downhill skiing, snowboarding, or just take a hike through the woods with snowshoes.

If you exercise outside in the winter, whether running, walking or biking, be sure to wear reflective clothing and a headlamp. Stay in well-lit areas and avoid areas where you don't feel safe. Wear a waterproof outer layer and other layers made of wool or polypropylene — wool socks, waterproof shoes, a warm hat, and mittens. Know your limits and ensure that you have good traction on slick surfaces.

Indoor Exercise

There are many forms of exercise you can do at home, even if you don't have a stationary bike or treadmill. Try 15 to 30 minutes of squats, jumping jacks, push-ups and sit-ups. In most cases that's all you will need to stay healthy at fit.

If you prefer to work out in a social setting, the gym or health club can offer a feeling of camaraderie along with an almost unlimited number of activities from yoga and martial arts to tennis and indoor soccer.

At work, try a walking meeting, climb the stairs and take a walk during lunch to get your heart rate up.

Published in Blog
Monday, 15 September 2014 13:58

Tips For Staying Fit During Pregnancy

For many women exercising during pregnancy can bring many positive benefits. The key is to engage in moderate aerobic activity, such as walking or swimming, while including strength and flexibility conditioning such as like yoga. This includes 30 minutes of walking or swimming three to four times a week.

A main benefit of regular exercise during pregnancy is the strengthening of muscles supporting the uterus, which can reduce common complications such as back pain, ankle swelling and fatigue. There are also emotional benefits to exercise, including reduced stress and enhanced body image.

The key to safe exercise during pregnancy is to avoid overexertion, which can blood flow to the fetus. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends mild-to-moderate exercise and stopping when fatigued. Instead of targeting a specific time or heart rate, pay attention to your level of fatigue and stop before you feel overly tired.

Most importantly, always talk with your doctor before starting a new exercise program to avoid potential injury.

Published in Blog
Wednesday, 11 September 2013 00:00

Experience The Health Benefits of Walking

Experience The Health Benefits of Walking

Physical activity doesn't have to be a complicated. Taking a daily, brisk walk is a great way to improve your health and well being.

Walking has many benefits, including:
  • Helps maintain a healthy weight
  • Reduces your risk for heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes
  • Strengthens joints and bones to reduce the risk of osteoporosis
  • Can improve your mood
  • Improves balance and coordination
Getting Started

Start your walking routine with the right gear. Make sure your shoes have proper arch support and sufficient cushioning. If you walk in the early morning or evening, wear clothing with reflective tape for visibility. Start by walking slowly for several minutes to warm up your muscles. Finish your walk by slowing down for several minutes to help your muscles cool down. Stretching can be performed prior to your walk or after the cool down.

Walking Technique

To gain the most benefit from walking, walk as briskly as you are able to do comfortably. Maintain a straight, yet relaxed posture, looking forward not down at the ground. Roll your feet smoothly from heel to toe.

Maintaining A Walking Routine

For healthy adults, 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity is recommended to maintain a healthy lifestyle. If you haven't been exercising regularly start slowly with five minutes a day the first week, and then increase your time by five minutes each week until you reach at least 30 minutes.

Keeping track of the distance you walk (or how many steps you have taken using a pedometer) will help motivate you to continue by tracking the progress you are making over time. Those short daily walks will add up to many miles over the course of a year.

By starting small with realistic goals you'll be surprised how quickly walking becomes part of your daily routine while controlling your weight and gradually improving your overall health and sense of well being.
Published in Blog
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