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For Men Too

Articles Pertinent to Men

Spend Less Time in Front of the Computer

Jan. 7, 2021

Healthy with Hanifa

With there being lockdown after lockdown as well as work from home, you may find that you're spending more and more time in front of the computer.  This can have a negative effect on your eyes, your posture, and even your musculature (you become tight and weak in certain areas).

That being said, what can be done about sitting in front of the computer all the time?  How can you do less of it, but still be productive?

1.  Set a timer - I'm trying a new habit.  I set the timer for 50 minutes, and for 10 minutes, I do something that has nothing to do with a computer screen.  You could head to the kitchen for a healthy snack or pet your cat.

2. Clean/Declutter - So when that timer goes off, it's a good idea to get some housework done.  Declutter a drawer, do some mopping, maybe even give that bathroom a  scrub.

3. Stretch - It may be a good idea to retract your shoulders or lift your arms overhead.  Get off of your chair and do a standing runner's stretch.  Turn your head to the right hold it for 30 sec.   Turn your head to the left and hold for 30 sec.

4. Turn off your social media - So you go from staring at your laptop or computer to staring at your cell phone.  Maybe it's a good idea to give social media, including your Facebook and Twitter, a total break. 

5.  Other pesky errands - it could be loading a new pile of laundry, taking the garbage out, or simply returning a phone call.  Just whatever you do, stop staring at the computer screen!    

Did You Hate Gym Class?

June 19, 2017

I had a conversation with Maggie Zaitlin, director and founder of the Canadian Fitness Education Services (CFES), which is a quality certifying body for fitness professionals. She was convinced that most adults have issues because of past bad experiences with a gym class or teacher.

I can second that. It is ironic that my full-time profession now is fitness, but I hated gym class myself. I wasn’t a sporty-type person and I was afraid of the ball. Furthermore, I lacked the self-confidence to do anything with a basketball if a team-mate passed it to me. I suffered chronic self-consciousness from my lack of athletic performance. I failed grade five phys. ed. because I hated volleyball and that’s all we ever did.

You could probably relate to my bad phys. ed. experiences. Do you associate exercise with

endless laps around the schoolyard?

being picked last for a team?

suffering from sweat and burning sensations in your side?

Maybe you, like many adults, have a horror story to tell. Nevertheless, this subconscious guck may prevent you from sticking to a consistent exercise program.

So, let’s dispel some myths and talk about realities:

1. Exercise is painful. Yes, you’ve got to get into your aerobic zone and you need adequate resistance for weight workouts, but it doesn’t always have to feel like death.

Reality: In fact, as a holistic practitioner, I’m not a firm believer in near-to-death experiences when it comes to exercise. It’s very depleting to your body and can throw off your hormonal balance. You’re best finding a moderate starting point and gradually increasing your time, weight, or distance.

2.If you hate phys. ed, you probably hate exercise. This is true for many. It’s easy to have nightmares (“Oh no, it’s the beep test tomorrow” ). I personally would sweat before the actual class because I always dreaded doing something I hated.

Reality: There’s more to life than 100 crunches, push-ups, and even team sports. If you conduct a google search in your area, you’ll find a variety of exercise classes and programs—everything from circuit training to pole walking. Maybe you’re better off with individual activities like brisk walking or weight-lifting in your basement. They key is finding something you enjoy and being consistent with it.

3.If you weren’t athletic before, you’ll never be athletic. If you fumbled the ball, tripped over yourself, or scored poorly on physical activity assessments, you’re doomed to failure—or are you?

Reality: Biking, running, or lifting weights are acquired skills. They improve over time. Get going, use proper load and technique, and you too will see improvement.

4.Exercise is too competitive. In phys. ed., it was all about scores, awards, and winning games. You just weren’t that in it to begin with.

Reality: Attend any exercise class and nobody really cares about what you’re doing because people are too concerned with themselves. Also, you may find the gym atmosphere intimidating, so once again, look for a less self-conscious-inducing environment and join a community center or exercise on your own.

5.Your gym teacher was fat, ugly, and mean. (Laugh) Maybe this was entirely true, so I’m not doubting you.

Reality: Your current exercise routine has nothing to do with your gym teacher. Stop letting him or her influence what you will or won’t do with your body.

My takeaway conclusion -- Don’t let your past dictate your future. You know exercise is good for you. Just exercise!       

© 2017  Healthy with Hanifa

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