Why it’s important for computer programmers to keep active
You’ve probably been told this all the time, even the more active workers like builders are told to go to the gym and use an exercise machine but IT workers especially tend to need it the most. You see we tend to get into the flow of our work and completely forget to pay attention to the needs of our bodies. Before we know it 6 hours have passed and we didn’t even get up to stretch our legs. That kind of inactivity is literally killing us, so how do we fix this problem? Sorry there isn’t an app for it, well there are some that may be able to help motivate us but really it’s all on your tired shoulders.
Step 1: Take regular breaks
This step will actually improve your productivity and focus as a bonus. There is a technique called the pomodoro which involves picking a task and working on it distraction free for 25 minutes and then taking a 5 minute break. In that 5 minute break I highly recommend getting away from the screen, getting up on your legs and taking a walk or some form of light exercise. This means that not only are you getting the most from your brain but also your body. You will also find that getting away from the screen will get your blood flowing and a break often produces mental clarity which will help solves your work problems and in turn make you far more efficient. Win win situation right?
Step 2: Exercise at least 2-3 times per week
This means either going to the gym or creating your own gym in your home (my preferred choice). So this isn’t going to be free but it’s an investment in your health, which is invaluable right? The best choice to start off with is to join a gym and try out the machines, get a trainer to help you out, tell them your needs and what your trying to achieve. They know their stuff and it will also help with the motivation as you don’t want to let them down!
When you’re serious and providing you have enough space in your home I recommend setting up a little home gym. That why when you’re feeling lazy to go out, you can just workout from the comfort of your own home and even watch your favourite TV shows whilst doing it. Sounds great right? You have to get the essentials right though. A combination of free weights and an all round exercise machine like a rowing machine is perfect. That way you get both cardio and strength training.
Alternatively you can always take up more outdoor activities such as hiking but that will require investment in some hiking gear first.
Step 3: Bonus stuff
In order to get yourself in the right frame of mind and make it easier to stay on track with your new goals I highly recommend two things: meditation and goal tracking. Meditation has huge benefits that not only give you a clear head but also make it far easier to do the things you normally wouldn’t want to. It helps get rid of that inner resistance and makes things like exercise not only effortless but also a joy. If you’re getting started one of the best ways is to use the headspace course which will guide you through it.
In terms of goal tracking, sign yourself up to chains.cc now! This site allows you to cross off each day which then creates a chain. If you don’t exercise or meditate for one day for example, that chain will be broken. It’s a simple but highly effective motivational tool. You can even join groups which adds peer pressure into the equation.