Monday, November 25, 2013

How Often Do I Move? An Experiment to Learn My Patterns

So, I'm running a wee experiment on myself. It occurs to me that I have become a bit too sedentary. Certainly, when I'm on the go, I'm out and running. But, when I'm at home, I'm noticing my tendency to sit (pretty still) and work and get stiff and hurt. It got me to thinking about how much physical activity I'm doing in any given day. I want to figure out how much and what kind.

So, here's what I'm going to do. I've set up an alarm system that will ring a bell every twenty minutes for twelve hours. During that time, every time the bell rings, I will need to do something physical. If I am already doing something physical (yoga, hiking, etc.) then I will need to up my game and do it faster or deeper depending on what is appropriate. If I am not doing something physical, if I am instead practicing music, or writing, or watching a movie, I'll be required to get up and do something like yoga, Tai Chi, stretching, jumping jacks, kickboxing, etc., for a period of at least one minute. Then, I'll go back to my previous activity.

I have a number of reasons for this.

First, I recognize that if I don't move and move pretty often, I get horribly sore. So, I need to move more and this experiment will accomplish this goal.

Second, I'd like to know exactly how I'm spending my time. Am I wasting a lot of it on tv or movies or games (not terribly, I don't think, but I'd like to know regardless).

Third, I think once I know exactly how I'm spending my time, I'll know what, if anything, I want to change to help myself be more efficient when I'm working, more productive when I'm practicing or writing, and more physical regardless of what I'm doing.

I'm going to chart my progress and likely put up little pie charts here to see what happens.

Today, I'm just setting practicing how I need to set up my metrics (what activities I generally do and how they will be entered into my database), and I'm also making sure that I do indeed get up and move when the alarm goes off.

There will be times, like when I am with a client, that I will not be able to complete my motion requirements (clients tend to frown on you getting up and doing jumping jacks while you're supposed to be reading for them or energy work on them). And I will need to see what sort of consequences I will make myself face when I do not engage in a physical activity when the alarm rings. I think it will likely be something like extra motion for longer as soon as I *can* do something, but I am not sure.

If you want to track my progress, I'll be updating everything here. I'm going to try and run this for a week and see how it goes.

Looking forward to this.

1 comment:

  1. So how will you know how much time you're spending at each activity? Will you require yourself to log it on the spreadsheet each time the alarm goes off? If so, what do you do about all the activities you do for less than 20 minutes at a time, but which add up to larger amounts during the day (a silly example that comes to mind is using the toilet; a more interesting one is how long you spend eating)?