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5 MORE Exercises Computer Guy Should NOT Be Doing

5 MORE Exercises Computer Guy Should NOT Be Doing

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    Leg Press

    All you have to do is load it up, strap yourself in (not really) and push as hard as you can.  I’ll admit, it can be pretty satisfying to see that much weight move because of your own strength and will.  Unfortunately, the leg press is not without its flaws.

    First of all, it can give you a false sense of real strength.  When you leg press, you’re in a sitting or lying position with little help from your core musculature.  Anytime you train that heavy without the core being involved the strength tends not to translate well to real life situations, and can result in injury.  Don’t plan on helping anyone jump start their car with your newfound strength.  

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    Second, you’ve been sitting down all day with your hips flexed and your pelvis in a posteriorly tilted position.  This has already put enough stress and compression on your lower spine.  When you perform the leg press you’re essentially in this same position, only with hundreds of pounds of pressure forcing you into even more compression.  Not smart.

    Alternatives

    • Lunges
    • Front Squats
    • Split Squats
    • Step Ups

    Shrugs

    Another exercise from the world of body building that doesn’t belong in the routine of the common desk jockey.  Because of your forward dominant work posture and stress, your body will not respond to this exercise the same way an elite athlete would.  It’s not impossible for you to perform the exercise appropriately, but there is such a narrow margin for error and the cost-to-benefit ratio just does not do you any justice.  When consistently done wrong, over time, you can expect to experience some form of neck pain or even headaches. 

    Alternatives

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    • Face Pulls
    • Barbell Rows
    • Cable Row Variations

     

    Loaded Back Extensions

    There is a common misconception that in order to have a healthy low back we need to have a strong low back.  It’s true that we want to have stability around the core as a whole, but when it comes to back health, our ability to move heavy weight through extension may do us more harm than good.  It’s much more important for us to get our moving strength from our glutes and our stabilizing strength from our core.  Try to stay far away from any machine that directly trains your low back extensors.  Any exercise in general that trains you to hyperextend should be avoided.  If low back health is at all a concern of yours, definitely learn and use the alternative exercises I’ve listed here below.

    Alternatives

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    • Planks
    • Side Planks
    • Bird Dogs
    • Glute Bridges
    • Dead Lifts

     

    Loaded AB Machine

    In my previous “things you should NOT do” article, I pulled apart sit-ups.  So it should not be a surprise to you that I would have the same to say about any loaded abdominal device.  It’s essentially the same thing.  Only this time you’ve got weight strapped to your back.  You’re pulling yourself even deeper into that forward dominant posture every time you do it.  Loaded compression of the lumbar spine, yadda yadda…it’s just not good for you.  Don’t do it.

    Alternatives

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    • Planks
    • Side Planks
    • Wood Chops

     

    Recumbent Bike

    It may be useful for someone rehabbing an injury.  But if your purpose in the gym is to get some kind of results, what are you doing on this piece of equipment?  You just spent eight hours of your life sitting at a desk staring at the computer.  Now you’re going to go to the gym to sit down for another thirty minutes to an hour looking at a magazine or the TV?  Your body was built to do its best moving in an upright and erect position.  Don’t insult your potential to be a fully mobile and functional human being by using this machine, please.

    Alternatives

    • Stepmill
    • Versaclimber
    • Upright Bike
    • Cross Trainer
    • Treadmill

     

    I know a lot of people may say it’s bad of me to write articles like this, that I’m only taking options away from people who might otherwise not workout.  This really is not my goal.  What I am trying to convey, is that fitness needs only to be as complicated as your body will allow it.  We don’t need all these fancy exercises and machines to develop our physiques to their full potential.  All that is needed is a few of the basics and some hard work.

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    Last Updated on January 21, 2020

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

    Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

    your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

      Why You Need a Vision

      Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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      How to Create Your Life Vision

      Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

      What Do You Want?

      The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

      It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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      Some tips to guide you:

      • Remember to ask why you want certain things
      • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
      • Give yourself permission to dream.
      • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
      • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

      Some questions to start your exploration:

      • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
      • What would you like to have more of in your life?
      • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
      • What are your secret passions and dreams?
      • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
      • What do you want your relationships to be like?
      • What qualities would you like to develop?
      • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
      • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
      • What would you most like to accomplish?
      • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

      It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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      What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

      Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

      A few prompts to get you started:

      • What will you have accomplished already?
      • How will you feel about yourself?
      • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
      • What does your ideal day look like?
      • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
      • What would you be doing?
      • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
      • How are you dressed?
      • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
      • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
      • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

      It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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      Plan Backwards

      It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

      • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
      • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
      • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
      • What important actions would you have had to take?
      • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
      • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
      • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
      • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
      • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

      Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

      It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

      Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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