Love Exercising But Have Varicose Veins?
Although varicose veins are often associated with being sedentary, overweight, pregnant, healthy, athletic adults often deal with the condition, too. In fact, if you’re doing anything that keeps you on your feet a lot, it strains the veins in your lower legs, resulting painful leg veins in the calves and lower part of the thighs.
If you already have varicose veins, you might be wondering whether you should still push hard to exercise? What types of exercise are best for you? Should you stop exercising completely? When do you need to seek treatment?
How Different Types of Exercise Affect Your Veins
While exercise is definitely essential, certain exercises can be better for you if you’re dealing with painful leg veins. To help you better understand which exercises are the best options for you, here’s a look at how different types of exercises affect your veins.
Hiking, Skiing, and Weightlifting
Certain types of exercise, such as hiking, skiing, and weight lifting put additional straining on your legs. These sports often involve forcing your legs to support even more weight than normal, which can contribute to the development of varicose veins. Weightlifting also has the potential to increase abdominal pressure and impede blood from traveling the way it should, increasing pressure in the veins in your legs.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you can’t go hiking in Alaska or ever hit the weights. Wearing compression socks can help. And when you do lift weights, make sure you’re using good lifting techniques and add some aerobic activity to keep the blood moving.
Cycling, Tennis, and Running
Other types of exercise, such as cycling, tennis, and running, involve repetitive motion, which can also strain the veins in your legs. The more often you engage in these sports and the more intensely you’re going, the higher the chance you’ll have a problem with painful leg veins.
Swimming and Walking
If you already have varicose veins, swimming and walking are two of the best options. Both are low-impact activities that get your blood pumping, which improves blood flow without placing additional street on the bones and joints. Walking also strengthens and stretches and calves, which is great for those lower leg veins, too.
The truth is certain risk factors for varicose veins can’t be changed, such as family history or being a woman. However, there are a few preventive measures you can take, such as:
- Wearing compression stockings when exercising to boost blood flow
- Eating a diet low in sodium
- Adding more fiber to your diet
- Elevating the feet in the evening after you’ve exercised
When It’s Time to Seek Treatment
If you’re dealing with varicose veins, despite working to prevent them, you may need to seek treatment for the condition. And while many individuals have no pain at all, treatment can help if you’re experiencing painful leg veins. Meet our Vein Physician in Anchorage, AK to find out more about the available treatment options for your varicose veins. We’re happy to answer your questions, address your concerns, and help you decide on a treatment for your needs. Discover more details about our Anchorage location by contacting us today.