How Technology Addiction Interferes with Workouts

How Technology Addiction Interferes with Workouts

Technology is constantly created to help us achieve better workouts such as Fitbits and Apple Watch. The problem is that if the battery of our device dies or we leave it at home, we use that as an excuse not to work out. It is important that we do not rely too much on these devices and still find the urge to work out without them to ensure we are healthy both physically and emotionally. 

Exercise Trackers

Wearing exercise trackers are a great way to have consistent results when you work out in that you can find out the amount of steps you have taken, reminders to keep working out, breathing exercises, and checking your BPM when you breathe. Being too dependent on this technology, however, can ruin your workout. You could have forgotten to charge your device the night before and you have no battery by the time it is time to see your trainer. This may cause you to cancel your appointment with your trainer because of charging your device at last minute, causing you to go all day or week without working out depending on when you see your trainer. 

There are some devices that reward you depending on the amount of steps you have. If you depend too much on these numbers, it shows that you are not working for yourself but for the numbers. Depending too much on your device metrics may actually be misleading you. A Stanford study says that six out of seven wearable devices were good at measuring heart, but not the most accurate with energy expenditure or calories burned. Trackers also have a tendency to discourage you if you see at the end of the day that you only have a thousand steps when your goal is 10,000. This may discourage you from still trying to get those steps. It is important to stick to your goal no matter what your wearable device is telling you.

Social Media Notifications

Even though we are at the gym and focusing on our workouts, we also cannot help but bring our phones with us in case we get a social media notification. You could be completing a set, but then get interrupted when you receive a notification from your social media account or an email. You feel like you cannot put this off until the end of your workout, leaving you to lose valuable calorie burning time. 

It can also be a problem to have your phone with you at the gym if you are constantly taking selfies or videos of yourself on Instagram for verification. If you do not get the respect from followers that you are seeking, you will feel too gloom to want to continue. Everyone works out differently at different speeds and intervals. Do not compare your progress to anyone else's. One benefit of having a Fitbit is that you get notifications from your phone if someone is calling or texting you so you will not be left in the dark.

Text Messages

Having someone text you repeatedly when you are trying to exercise can provide a huge distraction, especially if the text is about something important. According to a Hiram College and Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania study, calling and texting while working out can not only ruin your progress, but can ruin your balance. If you are in the middle of a jog, you will decrease your speed if someone is texting you so that you can read the message and avoid getting hit by a car when crossing the street. The American College of Sports Medicine says that being on your phone while working out will negatively impact your workout by 45%. You could be experiencing issues with your knees, legs, or hips if you are not focused. You can also risk hurting yourself if you are texting while on a treadmill or elliptical. 

Technology at the Gym

You may feel very connected to your phone in that you do not want to miss out on what your friends say or if you get an important email from work. At the same time, your workout should be the priority you focus on for the time being. This means that you should not have your phone on you when you are going to the gym. You can put your phone in your locker and get back to it when you are done with your workout. It may help to tell your friends or family the days and times that you go to the gym so that no one is disturbing you.

The only benefit that can come of having your phone with you at the gym is listening to music. Music has a way of boosting your workout in that the speed and intensity of your music will affecting your own speed and intensity. Music can also be a good motivator to keep going as well. If you do not have an MP3 player and you need to use your phone as your only source of music, make sure to put your phone on airplane mode so that you do not receive any calls or texts for the duration of your workout. When your phone is on airplane mode, you should be able to listen to any downloaded music on your phone. Putting your technology on hold and focusing on your workout will help you exercise well and safely.

Located on the shore of Southern New Jersey, Enlightened Solutions is a recovery center using evidence-based therapies and holistic healing to treat addiction and mental illness. With the opportunity to learn about therapies that are keyed in to healing the human spirit and learning about new stress reducing techniques centered around a 12 step network, you will be ensure a lasting recovery. For more information, please call us at 833-801-LIVE as we are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.


8 Tips For Making The Most Of Free Time

Early recovery can include a lot of down time in between treatment programming and activities. Sometimes downtime can be triggering because the impulse to use or drink still remains. One day you’ll learn to be comfortable with nothing to do, but you don’t have to be! Here are 8 ways to make the most of free time and live a full life.

Get Physically Active

Exercise is often a normal part of someone's routine so it never really feels like an option for down time. Getting physically active doesn't have to mean going to the gym.Taking a walk through the neighborhood, cleaning the house, reorganizing your room, or having a dance party can help you pass the time and get your body moving.

Learn Something New

Always wanted to learn a language? Interested in learning how to change the oil in your car yourself? Thanks to the internet, you can teach yourself how to do just about anything. Set yourself to a task and work on it a little bit each day. You’ll be amazed what you can accomplish!

Take Time For Reflection

With daily therapy and treatment programming you’ve probably had your share of sharing. Personal reflection time is helpful for taking quiet time to yourself and looking honestly at what you are accomplishing.

Choose A Hobby

Doing the same old same old can get boring. Boredom is a trigger for most people who are in recovery for an addiction. Instead of doing the same things, try something completely new. Choose a new hobby that is totally out of your comfort zone.

Go On Adventures

Everything can be an adventure if you want it to be! Adventuring in nature is proven to be good for mental health. Get some friends together and head to some local hiking trails, beaches, or whatever nature is nearby.

Travel

Traveling in early recovery can be difficult when there is a financial challenge. Travel doesn’t always have to be exotic to a far away place. Take a short drive to visit a friend or family member, explore a new area, or visit a new town. Getting out of your element broadens your horizons and helps you grow.

Practice Self-Care

Self-care is a special time for helping nurture and care for yourself in a healthy and positive way. Whatever it is that helps you relax, take time for yourself, and feel good is what you need to do for self-care.

Tend To Your Needs

Usually when we talk about tending to our needs in recovery, it is followed by discussion of self-care. Life has a lot of demands which become personal needs. However, we don’t often label them as personal needs. For example, you need to pay rent, pay your phone bill, and take care of what needs to be taken care of. When you neglect these things you put yourself at risk for creating stress, guilt, depression, and anxiety.

Enlightened Solutions is a partial care program, offering day treatment services at partial hospitalization, intensive outpatient, and outpatient services. If you or a loved one are looking for a certified treatment center for healing co-occurring disorders of addiction and secondary mental health disorders, call us today at 833-801-5483.


Physical Fitness is really Mental Fitness

Withdrawals. Detoxing. Craving. Feeling extremely uncomfortable. Early recovery (the first 30-90 days) is not the most inspirational to be physically active. In fact, early recovery feels more like the opportune time to do nothing but eat, group therapy, and sleep. Unfortunately, in most treatment programs, some form of physical activity is included. Gym time, personal trainers, yoga, walking, hiking- it seems like “those people” are determined to make you move. As with everything in early recovery, there is a purpose.

Physical Fitness is really Mental Fitness

Physical activity in early recovery isn’t really about the physical fitness. Of course, there is physiological benefit to exercise. Getting in a good sweat gets your heart rate going, opens up your sweat glands, and helps you detoxify residual junk from your drug of choice. Exercise is also proven to improve your mood and alleviate symptoms of depression. Substance abuse affects the brain on a very intimate level, right down to the neurotransmitters.

Neurotransmitters are communication messengers in the brain. One such transmitter called dopamine communicates pleasure. Alcohol, cocaine, and just about every abused substance creates a surplus of dopamine production, acclimating the brain to a very excited way of life. In early recovery when we’re stripped away from those substances, our brains have a very difficult time producing dopamine on its own. In fact, it is the act of substance abuse itself which creates this situation. Chemical dependency on drugs and alcohol is the result of the brain relying upon the presence of substances to produce that overload of dopamine. Consequently, in early recovery, there are many feelings of depression, irritability, low mood, and lethargy. Physical activity helps with that.

Physical activity also helps boost short-term brain function and heighten awareness, according to this Medium author. It also helps in defeating the most defeating part of the early recovery experience: being uncomfortable. There is little feeling as victorious as completing an exercise activity you absolutely did not think you could. At the onset of recovery, there is a lot of doubt. We are sometimes convinced for certain that we won’t make it. We can’t stand another detox and get through another 6 months of uncomfortable feelings. On another level, there are days we don’t think we can make it through anything at all. Exercise is a living metaphor that we can - and we will - get through it, and we grow in the process.

 

Enlightened Solutions incorporates yoga, exercise and other kinds of physical exercise as part of a holistic program of treatment for drug and alcohol addiction. We offer a unique approach to recovery, fusing 12 step philosophy with holistic methods of treatment. For more information on our programs call 833-801-5483.