Disconnecting Fitness: A CHAARG Girl’s Guide to Unplugging

In today’s world, life without technology can seem impossible [to be dramatic ; )]. Between smartphones, fitness trackers, television, + computers, everything can become something new to track or log, + suddenly we’re trying to compete against one another to have the healthier lifestyle [hello, FOMO]. Technology can be so helpful//beneficial to our fitness journeys, but if you find yourself constantly drawn to social media + comparing your progress to someone else’s, or obsessing over “step goals,” it might be a sign to take a step back from technology. Here are some ways to avoid letting technology take the FUN out of fitness!

#1] IGNITE YOUR PASSION // REMEMBER YOUR *WHY*

Try not to allow technology to suck the fun out of your workouts! It can be so easy to start comparing our progress with others, especially online, but we are all so unique — we all enjoy different workouts, which is why CHAARG is all about *finding your fit.* Anything you do won’t be enjoyable when you’re not motivated to do it, so reignite that motivation! Remember why you started your journey towards a healthier lifestyle in the first place + let that motivate you to workout, rather than allowing fitness trackers + apps to dictate when you should//shouldn’t workout, + what that workout should be.

#2] SEPARATE FITNESS FROM YOUR TO-DO LIST

10,000 Steps: Check. Lab Report: Check. 30 Minutes of Activity: Check! Sound familiar? When fitness becomes another check off the to-do list, the connection between your body + your workout can get lost. Working out is supposed to be a healthy way to move your body + stay active//healthy while doing something you enjoy. Comparing your workouts to your other to-do list items can make your gym time more stressful, too, because it makes it another thing to get done rather than an activity to keep you healthy + take you away from the stresses of everyday life. A workout routine will stick if your workouts aren’t a chore, but a way of celebrating your strength + health!

#3] GET UNCOMFORTABLE

In order for our bodies to adjust to any unexpected turns life can take, we need to learn how to be uncomfortable! It’s easy to stay behind a computer screen + conform to the goals fitness trackers set for us, but what’s the fun in that? ; ) Get out into the world: try new fitness classes, join a sports team, or train for a race. You might not like everything you try, but chances are, you’ll end up finding a lot of things you do enjoy. Don’t let the fear of being the *newbie* scare you off — break free from your comfort zone + enjoy a fresh start! : )

#4] LISTEN TO YOUR BODY

Rather than allowing technology to tell you how healthy you are, let your body do the talking! Our bodies our so smart + know best about what we need//don’t need. Your fitness tracker may seem reliable because it claims to track heart rate, steps, sleep, + so much more, but it’s always better to act based on how your body feels than act based on how your fitness tracker says you feel. If the tracker says you got seven hours of sleep last night, that could sound good on paper, but take a second + notice how you actually feel. Are you well-rested? Are your muscles recovering well, or are they still sore from a workout a few days ago? Above all, your body knows best, so listen to what it has to say! : )

Technology can be used as a helpful tool when trying to develop a healthier lifestyle — you can go online to search healthy recipes, keep track of your resting heart rate, ++ even track your water intake! But if you find that technology is starting to influence how you feel about fitness, it may be a sign to take a step back. Fitness shouldn’t be a chore or a task — it should be an enjoyable part of your life!

++Ashleigh Monaco [ashvm_inchaarg] // University of Iowa

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