It’s a nice idea: putting your feet up and bunkering down for some winter hibernation.
In reality though, our bodies can be put through their paces during the festive rush, with all the to-ing and fro-ing and extra shopping to be done (and you’ll want to save some energy for the dance floor at your work Christmas bash).
So if you’re prone to tired, heavy legs – which, according to a survey by Scholl, around 52% of women say they experience at least twice a week – you might want to hot-foot it over here to check out the brand’s top tips, in conjunction with their Dance Through Your Day campaign to launch their new Light Legs compression hosiery range.
Here are seven ways to relieve tired legs this winter…
1. Compression tights
Michael Harrison-Blount, expert podiatrist at the University of Salford, says: “We all know how tiring legs can feel after a long day on your feet, and compression tights can really support you to help alleviate this. The highest level of compression should start at the ankle, which moves blood from the foot and ankle into the calf. Intermediate compression should then be applied at the calf to move blood up the leg and into the thigh. Finally, lowest compression should be at the thigh to keep the blood moving towards the heart.”
Heavy legs often happens because the valves in your legs, which stop blood from flowing back down and pooling in your extremities, are weakened. All that blood collecting in your legs is what makes them feel heavy, but regular walking helps keep the valves strong and your blood pumping.
3. Stay out of the sun
Excessive heat will dilate your veins, so make sure your legs don’t overheat, in the sun or the bath, as the blood flow to your legs will increase, and your feet in particular can end up feeling quite swollen and weighty.
4. Raise your legs
Lying on the floor with your legs raised, and your feet braced against the wall for five to 10 minutes every morning and evening will help relieve heaviness and aches.
5. And don’t cross them
However comfortable it may feel to sit with your legs crossed, it restricts proper blood flow and can weaken your vein valves. It’s a good idea to stretch regularly, move around and work your feet muscles too.
6. Loosen your clothes
While compression tights can benefit heavy leg feeling, wearing tight jeans, strappy sandals, high heels and clothes that can cut in, will hinder blood flow – if you feel comfortable and free, so will your veins.
7. Take a cool shower
Shower instead of taking a bath, and try spraying your legs and feet with a blast of cool water – it’ll reinvigorate your extremities and get the blood pumping, so your limbs won’t feel so lethargic.