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How Your Smartphone Is Ruining Your Posture And Your Mood

How Your Smartphone Is Ruining Your Posture And Your Mood

Smartphones are a large part of our lives whether we like it or not. They are a necessary evil to be a part of this century. Evil is a strong word because we love our smartphones and the way they keep us connected with everyone. We are the most connected human beings have ever been! We can’t help but to keep these gadgets by our side at all times.

There is an unspoken joy when we get a notification that an old friend from school has just commented on a picture asking how we are doing. It creates an addiction to check our smartphones every time we feel the buzz in our pockets. We can’t help but to continuously check them over and over. Sometimes, we feel the dake buzz in our pocket and start to think we are going crazy! Smartphones have been around for quite a few years now and they don’t look like they are just a fad. What are they doing to us now and how do they affect our lives moving forward?

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If you are in a public place, take a look around. How many people do you see with their heads down starring into their screens? Do they look powerful and confident? Do they look approachable, nice, caring, and kind? If we we are really honest with ourselves, we act like zombies when we are walking and trying to type a text!

Smartphones are physically hurting us

The average head weighs 10-12 pounds (unless you are Donald Trump, yours weighs A LOT more). When we slouch our heads down at a 60 degree angle to look at our phones, we are putting the strain of 60 pounds on our necks! That is the same weight of 6 gallons of paint! Long term how do you think that effects your neck muscles, your vertebrae, and even the rest of your body helping to stabilize?

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A physiotherapist out of New Zealand, Steve August calls it the “iHunch.” He’s been treating it for years and sees it effecting our bodies for the worst. Especially in teens and kids that have been growing up with smartphones

Smartphones are effecting our self image and happiness

When someone is depressed their head is down, shoulders forward, their back is slouched and their foot strides are short. Sounds like the smartphone zombie walk to me! Studies have shown over and over that your posture perfects the way you think about yourself. Have you seen the Ted talk by Amy Cuddy about how your body language effects who you are? In it, the professor speaks about different body poses and how they can positively and negatively affect your mood and your self image. It’s science, your phone is effecting your body language and that is effecting who you are.

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Smartphones are ruining our posture

“Johnny sit up straight!” I think we can all here the teacher or our parents saying that to us when we were young. Who knew it would be this important? there have been plenty of studies done on this but one in particularly done in 2010 in the journal of the Brazilian Psychiatric Association that had interviewers sit in a certain posture both in a good and bad posture and asked the same questions. The interviewers that had the better posture gave better and more positive answers than their counterparts. The researchers then concluded that sitting up straight with good posture will help combat stress.

As noted previously, the smartphones are not doing anything to help our necks and head but they are effecting the way we sit, stand and how we come across to others.

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How can we fix this?

This is a topic for an entirely different article, but for starters, there are a few quick and immediate things to keep us all happy, healthy and once again communicating in a better way with each other.

  • When you are in a public place, unless you absolutely NEED to, stay off your phone
  • When you are at the table sitting across from someone, stay off your phone. Even if they are on theirs, make an example.
  • Have a day of fasting every week. Pick a day of the week and make it your “Smartphone Sabbath.” Once I did this, I realized how addicted I really was and it made me much more conscious of the amount of time I am locked on to my smartphone.

Smartphones are not evil or bad. They are a great tool to do a lot of things but we can choose if they will negatively effect or positively effect our lives.

Let’s not get rid of them but when we are in public or with someone in person, let’s get back to the basics of talking 1 on 1. It will help us in the long run more than we think.

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Last Updated on September 18, 2020

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

7 Simple Rules to Live by to Get in Shape in Two Weeks

Learning how to get in shape and set goals is important if you’re looking to live a healthier lifestyle and get closer to your goal weight. While this does require changes to your daily routine, you’ll find that you are able to look and feel better in only two weeks.

Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about what it takes to get in shape. Although anyone can cover the basics (eat right and exercise), there are some things that I could only learn through trial and error. Let’s cover some of the most important points for how to get in shape in two weeks.

1. Exercise Daily

It is far easier to make exercise a habit if it is a daily one. If you aren’t exercising at all, I recommend starting by exercising a half hour every day. When you only exercise a couple times per week, it is much easier to turn one day off into three days off, a week off, or a month off.

If you are already used to exercising, switching to three or four times a week to fit your schedule may be preferable, but it is a lot harder to maintain a workout program you don’t do every day.

Be careful to not repeat the same exercise routine each day. If you do an intense ab workout one day, try switching it up to general cardio the next. You can also squeeze in a day of light walking to break up the intensity.

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If you’re a morning person, check out these morning exercises that will start your day off right.

2. Duration Doesn’t Substitute for Intensity

Once you get into the habit of regular exercise, where do you go if you still aren’t reaching your goals? Most people will solve the problem by exercising for longer periods of time, turning forty-minute workouts into two hour stretches. Not only does this drain your time, but it doesn’t work particularly well.

One study shows that “exercising for a whole hour instead of a half does not provide any additional loss in either body weight or fat”[1].

This is great news for both your schedule and your levels of motivation. You’ll likely find it much easier to exercise for 30 minutes a day instead of an hour. In those 30 minutes, do your best to up the intensity to your appropriate edge to get the most out of the time.

3. Acknowledge Your Limits

Many people get frustrated when they plateau in their weight loss or muscle gaining goals as they’re learning how to get in shape. Everyone has an equilibrium and genetic set point where their body wants to remain. This doesn’t mean that you can’t achieve your fitness goals, but don’t be too hard on yourself if you are struggling to lose weight or put on muscle.

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Acknowledging a set point doesn’t mean giving up, but it does mean realizing the obstacles you face.

Expect to hit a plateau in your own fitness results[2]. When you expect a plateau, you can manage around it so you can continue your progress at a more realistic rate. When expectations meet reality, you can avoid dietary crashes.

4. Eat Healthy, Not Just Food That Looks Healthy

Know what you eat. Don’t fuss over minutia like whether you’re getting enough Omega 3’s or tryptophan, but be aware of the big things. Look at the foods you eat regularly and figure out whether they are healthy or not. Don’t get fooled by the deceptively healthy snacks just pretending to be good for you.

The basic nutritional advice includes:

  • Eat unprocessed foods
  • Eat more veggies
  • Use meat as a side dish, not a main course
  • Eat whole grains, not refined grains[3]

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Eat whole grains when you want to learn how to get in shape.

    5. Watch Out for Travel

    Don’t let a four-day holiday interfere with your attempts when you’re learning how to get in shape. I don’t mean that you need to follow your diet and exercise plan without any excursion, but when you are in the first few weeks, still forming habits, be careful that a week long break doesn’t terminate your progress.

    This is also true of schedule changes that leave you suddenly busy or make it difficult to exercise. Have a backup plan so you can be consistent, at least for the first month when you are forming habits.

    If travel is on your schedule and can’t be avoided, make an exercise plan before you go[4], and make sure to pack exercise clothes and an exercise mat as motivation to keep you on track.

    6. Start Slow

    Ever start an exercise plan by running ten miles and then puking your guts out? Maybe you aren’t that extreme, but burnout is common early on when learning how to get in shape. You have a lifetime to be healthy, so don’t try to go from couch potato to athletic superstar in a week.

    If you are starting a running regime, for example, run less than you can to start. Starting strength training? Work with less weight than you could theoretically lift. Increasing intensity and pushing yourself can come later when your body becomes comfortable with regular exercise.

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    7. Be Careful When Choosing a Workout Partner

    Should you have a workout partner? That depends. Workout partners can help you stay motivated and make exercising more fun. But they can also stop you from reaching your goals.

    My suggestion would be to have a workout partner, but when you start to plateau (either in physical ability, weight loss/gain, or overall health) and you haven’t reached your goals, consider mixing things up a bit.

    If you plateau, you may need to make changes to continue improving. In this case it’s important to talk to your workout partner about the changes you want to make, and if they don’t seem motivated to continue, offer a thirty day break where you both try different activities.

    I notice that guys working out together tend to match strength after a brief adjustment phase. Even if both are trying to improve, something seems to stall improvement once they reach a certain point. I found that I was able to lift as much as 30-50% more after taking a short break from my regular workout partner.

    Final Thoughts

    Learning how to get in shape in as little as two weeks sounds daunting, but if you’re motivated and have the time and energy to devote to it, it’s certainly possible.

    Find an exercise routine that works for you, eat healthy, drink lots of water, and watch as the transformation begins.

    More Tips on Getting in Shape

    Featured photo credit: Alexander Redl via unsplash.com

    Reference

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