Weekly Check-In Tuesday 12/1

Hello all!  You may have noticed there were no posts besides the check in last week, National Novel Writing Month was the focus of my attention.  I finished my novel, Bound by Allegiance, last night just before 2200 hours (10 PM).  I didn’t make it out on my bike ride.  Every day last week was below freezing when I wanted to go out on a bike ride but I don’t trust drivers in the freezing temperature here.  I almost get hit when the weather is fine out.  I managed to get out there and walk a little every day though.  Next week there will be a weigh-in as it is the start of a new month.  This week I am not at home to use the scale.

I am going to be looking at redoing the schedule for posting to reduce the number of posts but potentially to connect multiple of the content types into one post.  Stay tuned to see the changes.

Tips To Stay Healthy At Your Desk – Finish It Friday

Many people work at a desk around the world with little time for a break.  With the busy life you need to know how to stay healthy at your desk.  Here are some tips to stay healthy at your desk.

Tip 1: Stay Healthy At Your Desk By Drinking Water

Many of us go about their day plugging away at their work.  So focused that they forget to do anything else, or put it off.  This includes drinking water.  If you want to stay healthy at your desk you need to remember to drink enough water.  It will help keep your attention focused, prevent headaches, and keep your body working like it should.

Tip 2: Stay Healthy At Your Desk By Standing Up

Sitting for long periods of time is bad for your body.  Your body is made to move, it doesn’t process the foods you eat or perform properly if it just sits there.  To Stay healthy at your desk you need to stand up and move.  I get up every hour for at least five minutes.  It doesn’t have to be something fancy.  You can walk in place at your desk, walk to the bathroom, walk to the floor below (or above) and use their bathroom, or anything else that you can use as an excuse to get moving.

Tip 3: Stay Healthy At Your Desk By Stretching Your Fingers

It has long been known that typing all day causes strain on your fingers and wrists.  Make sure that you take a pause every now and then to stay healthy at your desk.  Raise your hand, stretch your fingers in and out, roll your wrists, give your fingers and wrists a break in general.  It might also be a good idea to through in some extra activity to stay healthy at your desk.  Stretch your neck muscles, stretch your arms, extend your legs back and forth.  All of these activities will help to stretch out your body and keep the blood flowing.

Tip 4: Stay Healthy At Your Desk By Considering an Alternate Chair

There are a wide number of companies that sell alternative chairs to use at your desk.  These help you improve your posture and feel better after a long day at work.  You can even use a balance ball.  Sometimes though, your balance ball just doesn’t fit in your cubicle.  This company provides several different office chair alternatives to stay healthy at your desk!

Tip 5: Stay Healthy At Your Desk By Going Phoneless

Now this tip to stay healthy at your desk might not work for everyone but its worth a try.  If you can speak to a co-worker face to face, forget the phone or email.  Get up and walk to them.  It’s a great excuse to get up and move but it also gets you out of the staring at information slump.  It gives social interaction which all of us need.

Tip 6: Stay Healthy At Your Desk By Limiting Your Coffee

I used to think that coffee sucked.  That was before I tried adding a hint of cream and mixing coffee types.  Now I am a firm believer in coffee and drink a mug of it every day I work eight or more hours.  However, I probably shouldn’t.  Coffee, especially coffee with sugar and creamer, don’t help you stay healthy at your desk.  The caffeine messes with your body and adds calories to your day.  Limit your coffee (and other caffeine sources) to one a day.  This will better help you stay healthy at your desk.

Tip 7: Stay Healthy At Your Desk By Taking A Lunch Break

Most of us want to get our work done so we tend to eat our lunch at our desk.  I can be guilty of this too, especially since 3 out of the 4 sites that I work don’t allow me to leave the site during lunch.  Taking a true lunch break where you leave your desk can boost your concentration and give you the time away from work to boost your mood.  To stay healthy at your desk try to take a lunch break away from your desk.  Find a bench outside, go for a walk, move your chair across the room and eat there.  To stay healthy at your desk, you need to leave your desk for lunch.

 

Fitbit’s Fitforgood Challenge

Ten days ago I received an email in my inbox about Fitbit’s fitforgood.  I hadn’t heard anywhere about this activity but upon going to the Fitbit website I found that it was actually a fun way to be motivated and help a good cause.  And before I continue, yes, fitforgood is all one word and all under case.  At least, most of the time.  The Fitbit website alternates.

The fitforgood Challenge

fitforlife example

Imagine all the people using their Fitbits every day like the woman in this picture.  That is tens of billions of steps per week.  What if you could put those steps to a good use.  This is where fitfor good comes in.

Fitbit set aside one million dollars to go to charity but their method for deciding what charity the money goes to is a little different.  They want users to determine by how many steps they take.  From the 9th of November until the 20th Fitbit users have the option to choose a charity to donate their steps to.  The charity with the most steps wins the largest piece of the donation money.

The fitforgood Charities

Here are the three charities that are participating in the event:

American Heart Association

An organization dedicated to building a world without the worry of heart diseases or strokes.

National Multiple Sclerosis Society

An organization that focuses on providing research and resources to fighting the disease known as multiple sclerosis.

American Diabetes Association

An organization that focuses on aiding those who have disabilities and improving their lives.

The fitforgood Charity Prizes

The fitforgood prizes are determined in a standard contest method.  The 1 million dollars will be split between the three charities with the winner getting the most money and the charity with the least steps, getting the least amount.

First Prize $500,000

Second Prize $350,000

Third Prize $150,000

My fitforgood Choice and Status

I am supporting the American Heart Association.  My family has a history of heart-related problems, including my birth mother passing away due to a heart related problem.  Additionally, the AHA has provided some of my first aid/CPR training in the past.  It’s an agency that I have some experience with.

As of my last sync I contributed 93,296 steps.  Fitbit informs me that that is the equivelant to walking around the Coney Island Boardwalk 18 times.

With about a day and a half left in the competition I am happy to say that the American Heart Association is winning with 8.625 billion steps.  This is about 41% of the current 21.133 billion steps that have been taken already in the competition.  The other two charities are neck and neck with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society taking a 1% lead over ther American Diabetes Association.

Weekly Check-In 11/16/2016

Hello!  This last week was full of some ups and some downs.  I drove down to Portland on one day for a job interview which meant that my steps were low.  Being in a car for 6-7 hours does that to you.  Then another day my mom was in town and my steps were kinda low that day too.  Despite the rainy weather I feel overall pretty good about my week though.

Chart

I tried to integrate bridging and some other exercises more into my day to help account for the reduced steps.  Doing the bridges felt pretty good.

Goals For This Week

I want to go out on a walk every day of this week, no matter how short.  In addition, my goal is that over the weekend I would like to go on at least one bike ride.  Depending on the weather that might turn into a longer walk.

Squat Breaks – Finishing It Friday

Sitting at your desk all day is bad for your health but more importantly it is uncomfortable and will leave butt prints in your chair.  To prevent this from happening take a break at least once every hour.  I personally aim for at least five minutes doing something for every hour I am at the desk.

Squats are known to be a great workout but they put a lot of stress on you and can look a bit out of place when your head keeps popping up over your cubicle.  Plus squats are an active exercise that prevent you from multitasking.  Instead of doing active squats take your breaks “sitting” in the squat position.  These are squat breaks.  Other cultures around the world have used squat breaks for ages to help relax.  Take a look at these guys taking squat breaks:

Squat Breaks

You may find squat breaks difficult at first but the more you do them the better you get at them.  We as Americans aren’t used to holding positions like this so our bodies need to learn.

How To Take Squat Breaks

Simply stand up from your desk, move your chair, and lower yourself down into a squatting position.  When you are lowering yourself down and when you are in the squatting position itself you should make every effort to keep your feet flat on the ground.  When you raise your feet up it throws the position out of wack.

Squat breaks won’t feel like a break at first.  Despite the fact you aren’t raising and lowering your body in an active squat you are still stretching out your body and holding a position you aren’t accustom to.  This will give you a workout.  Do it more to get used to it.  If you can lower your desk you can even work in the squat breaks position.

5 Worst Foods For You

Ever pick up that pack of Oreos and think that it was one of the worst foods for you?  Well take a look at this list worst food for you.  Maybe one of your favorite treats can be found on this list.

Worst Foods For You #1: Doughnuts

Doughnuts are the food of television cops but they are one of the worst foods for you.  Not only because of all the fat, calories, and carbs that they have but also because of the fact they mess with your body.  When you eat doughnuts it makes it harder for you to digest all of the foods you eat around the same time you have the doughnut.

Worst Foods For You #2: Chips, Especially Potato Chips

Once again this is another one of the worst foods for you that isn’t just on here because of the bad ingredients and oily nature.  Chips are hard to put down.  Once you start eating chips you want to eat more and more.

Worst Foods For You #3: Vitamin Water

The traditional vitamin water is tricky because it uses the word vitamin in the name.  This alone makes you think its healthy.  In fact, you are drinking 125 calories (per serving) of sugar water.  One bottle alone is 2.5 servings.  There is VitaminWater10 which only has 25 calories in the whole bottle.

Worst Foods For You #4: Processed Meat

Next time you see those wieners hanging out in the grocery store its probably time to move out of the way and move on.  Processed meats, like hot dogs, have all of the bad things like fats, sodium, and cholesterol, not to mention of the toppings that you heap onto them.

Worst Foods For You #5: Soda

Soda is fattening.  That is all there is to it.  One of my friends at work stopped drink the liter of two of soda he had every day and has already started to notice physical changes in his body due to weight loss.  Soda is full of loads of sugar.  Depending on the brand it has around 10 teaspoons of sugar.

Scheduling Update & Motivational Wednesday

Hello!  Sorry for the lack of article yesterday.  For those that don’t know this month is National Novel Writing Month.  I am participating this year, as I have the past three years, and my goal is to write 50,000 words in the span of the month of November.  This can be extremely difficult and often takes much of my free time.  Until the end of the month Tuesday posts will be put on hold but Thursday’s informational content will continue to come through!

I’ll leave you with a quote for Motivational Wednesday.

Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live.
~Jim Rohn

Weekly Check-In Monday 11/9/2015

Over the last week I didn’t meet 10,000 steps three days but I met my goal of not having any days less than 6,000 steps.  Because last week I didn’t have the Fitbit for most of the first two days I don’t have exact step counts in my Fitbit app (how I normally compile these posts).  I know thought that Monday I was over 10,000 steps and believe I was into the 14,000 or 15,000 range.  Instead of Including a typed out step count this week I decided to try something new and include a screenshot of my step chart on Fitbit.

Weekly Step Chart 11-9

I am frustrated that I didn’t make 10,000 yesterday and I am quite confused how I didn’t.  I don’t think the Fitbit Charge HR accurately tracks steps taken while doing chores.  I spent several hours moving things around the new place, carrying stuff, and shopping.  All I ended up with was slightly over 3,000 steps.  Typically in an hour though I should be able to get around at least 6,000 steps.  The math doesn’t really add up.  What matters though is that I knew I got a workout yesterday by moving heavy boxes.

My Weight

You may notice that I didn’t include a weight in this weeks weekly check-in.  This is because I found that not having to think about weighing myself during the week actually made me happier.  I am going to continue to try this until December.  Instead of using weight as the main thing to track my fitness I am going to use steps and activities performed during the week.

This Weeks Goal

Last week I liked having the goal of having at least 6,000 steps per day.  This week I want to up that to 6,500.  If I can continue to make the number of steps go up every week I should continue to improve my fitness and activity levels.