Hey! Hope you had fun at Destressor Week and all the fun events we had planned. This is Shal, for Saturdays with Shal. Today I wanted to focus on procrastination since I know this becomes everyone’s favourite word during the end of the semester. "If it’s not the due date it’s not the do date", as I’ve heard so many times. According to Seth Gillihan, a clinical assistant professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, there are two main drivers for why procrastination happens: it’s going to be a pain and I’m not going to do a good job (psychologytoday.com). After all, why start something that you think is hard and you’ll do terrible at (i.e., my PSY230 paper)? But this is where you can improve, because Gillihan provides 7 steps to break procrastination habits.
1) "Create manageable pieces." So start at the start. Make a plan of how you’re going to break that big paper or studio project into smaller tasks that are easier to work with.
2) "Decide to start." Honestly, just jump right in. There’s nothing worse than being in that mindset of, “I can start this right now, but first I’m gonna relax with 1 episode of Grey’s Anatomy.” Before you know it, you’ve lost half the day because you keep putting off starting. Start now, start now!
3) "Make space.” This one is a must for us studio workers. I’m looking at you 665 dwellers! Clean up your space before you work so everything is organized and less stressful. And most importantly, CLEAN UP AFTER YOU’RE DONE!
4) "Set alarms and reminders." When we're avoiding a task, it's easy to forget to do it. We're much more likely to do something when we've set aside a specific time to do it and have put it in our calendar with an alarm.
5) "Build in accountability." Telling at least one person about our plan to complete a specific task by a certain date can raise our odds of doing it, if only to avoid the discomfort of being asked why we haven’t.
6) "Reward yourself." We can also motivate ourselves with small rewards for meeting a goal. The specifics will depend on the individual and might include snacks, entertainment, or socializing. All I can picture are those memes of cats being all pampered, and the meme saying, “me after a long day of doing the bare minimum.” Try not to go overboard and fall back to step 2.
7) "Practice acceptance." It's difficult to change our habits, and accepting that it's hard work can go a long way toward increasing your willingness to do it. Remind yourself why you wanted to procrastinate less, and how uncomfortable you're willing to be in the short term to feel better in the long term. So that’s everything that he said on this (I just see practice acceptance as knowing you suck at not procrastinating, but don’t be like that too).
There you have it, 7 steps toward less procrastinating and more success. And much to my sadness, next week is the last SWS. In celebration of a great year, I have a nice surprise for it (and there will be no dogs named Danny involved). Have a great weekend Daniels, keep it classy out there.
Hey, how’s your Saturday going? This is Saturdays with Shal, where I will be talking about calorie consumption today. But before I do, I wanted to make an announcement… THIS WEEK STARTING ON MONDAY IS DESTRESSOR WEEK! That’s right, the week of March 20th to 24th is Destressor Week where we have lots of fun and destressing events planned for you! Now… back to calories!
I feel this is fitting since restaurants in Ontario have recently displayed calories on their menus. Under the Healthy Menu Choices Act, “new Ontario regulations require any restaurant with more than 20 locations to include calorie counts for all food and drinks” (Ontario Government). But how many calories do you need? Males ages 17-18 should be getting anywhere between 2450-3300 calories a day depending on a sedentary vs. active lifestyle. Ages 19-30 are between 2500-3000. For females ages 17-18, it is 1750-2400. And lastly, ages 19-30 is between 1900-2350. So now you have the number of calories you should be intaking per day, you have access to how many calories are in majority restaurants. But how do you keep track of your calories? My favourite app to use is called MyFitnessPal, available for iPhone and Android (https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/calorie-counter-diet-tracker-by-myfitnesspal/id341232718?mt=8). Owned by Under Armour, it’s an incredible app for calorie and exercise tracking. You can search by food if you went to a restaurant, or each ingredient if you cooked at home. If your phone has a pedometer in it, this app will even use your exercise taken from that and adjust how many calories you’ll need accordingly. Not only is this a good food tracker, but it also helps you lose weight, maintain weight, or gain weight. It takes your personal info and uses it to help you reach whatever weight goal you are reaching for. I strongly suggest downloading it and giving it a try if you own a cellphone. That is all for this week, Daniels, hope I see you in studio on Monday for Colouring & Jigsaw Puzzles during the day, and it’s Board Games Night starting at 7! Keep it classy out there.
Well hi there! Welcome to this week’s edition of Saturdays with Shal. As mentioned last week there were some people that wanted options for home workouts, hopefully in video form. This was awesome, thank you for the request. I’m actually going to hype some Youtube channels, workout videos, and apps today. So I’ll start with Youtube channels: Fitness Blender is an excellent channel devoted to home-workout style fitness. Here’s their channel -> https://www.youtube.com/user/FitnessBlender . Want Yoga specific exercises? YogaTX is a good channel for all skill levels: https://www.youtube.com/user/yogatx . If you’re looking for the highest intensity home workouts (let’s be real…. me neither) look for P90X or Insanity through Amazon. If you asked me what I think is the best, I would say apps. My personal favourite is Nike’s set of apps. Nike+Training Club is amazing (http://www.nike.com/ca/en_gb/c/nike-plus/training-app). They have everything from different skill level, to duration, to equipment, to intensity, to focus. NTC is interactive, meaning it keeps your time for you, a video explaining each workout, how many reps you need, and allows you to pause if you need a break. You can play your music at the same time and receive a progress report at the end. A specific feature I love is something called “My Plan.” You custom make your own workout plan using settings and the app does the planning for you. For example, "start up” is a 4 week plan that allows you to choose no equipment, how many workouts per week, and if you want to include running. This creates a day to day schedule for you… pretty awesome if you need motivation! Simultaneously with Nike+Training Club is Nike+Run Club (http://www.nike.com/ca/en_gb/c/nike-plus/running-app-gps). Similar to NTC, NRC is completely customized to your skill level and time management. Use "My Coach” to get started on a plan. Lastly there’s yoga apps. Just by searching “yoga” in the App Store or Google Play, you’ll find hundreds of apps available. Unfortunately most of them need to be purchased, but there are some free ones as well. I personally use Pocket Yoga. It costed $2.99 but gave me access to a large selection of yoga workouts.
Well that is all this week, Daniels. I encourage you to at least download the apps (if not these ones, try some others!) and check out how they work (then while you’re at it create a plan and started working out *evil genius, maniacal laugh*). See you next Saturday with tips on calorie consumption, keep it classy out there.
It’s Saturday! And it’s March’s first Saturdays with Shal. Today: ergonomics... especially a proper computer setup. Thanks to University of Michigan, there is a website on tons of info about this, https://www.uhs.umich.edu/computerergonomics . U of Mich talks about how you should set up your computer workstation, including using a proper chair and sitting posture. Your back should be in an upright and relaxed position, hopefully with lumbar support. Your elbows should be at a 90º angle and be close to the body. When possible, keep the laptop or monitor at eye level to prevent strain, and finally keep upper legs parallel and feet flat on the floor. Since we all sit in front of a computer for prolonged periods, U of Mich suggests that, “every 30-60 minutes, take a brief (2-5 minute) break to stretch and/or walk around" (www.uhs.umich.edu). What are some good computer exercises? Glad you asked! Here are some good ones below:
- Neck Rotation: Slowly rotate your head as far as comfortable to the right, then left.
- Shoulder Rotation: Circle your shoulders, then reverse directions.
- Head Side to Side: Bend your neck so left ear approaches left shoulder, then repeat for right. Add a little resistance by pressing your hand against the side of your head.
- Chin Tuck: Slide your chin inward, without bending your neck up or down. This is easiest to practice initially against a wall. Tuck chin in, attempting to touch back of neck to the wall while also maintaining head contact. Don't jam your chin down to your chest.
- Shoulder Blade Retraction: Pull your shoulders down and back.
- Shrug: Slowly raise your shoulders toward ears and hold for a few seconds. Gradually bring shoulders down and relax.
- Wrists: One thing that U of Mich doesn’t mention is that you should be stretching the fingers and wrists. Gently flex the wrists up, then down, then do some circular rotation.
As requested, I’ll be providing some resources for home exercises you can do next week. Make me proud and try these computer exercises after long hours of sitting. That’s it for now Daniels, keep it classy out there.
This is a sad day for Saturdays with Shal. Because in two days, it’s the end of Reading Week and back to the grind that is Daniels. But chin up everyone, this also means we are at the halfway point of the semester! To get you prepared for the final half of semester, I wanted to help you out with food locations around U of T that are handy for when you’re spending long hours at campus throughout the week. This can all be found here, https://ueat.utoronto.ca/campus-locations/ . If you find yourself always buying food at campus, I also recommend getting a meal plan (info on that is also on the website). U of T offers 57 locations throughout St. George campus to enjoy a meal. Luckily, most of these are close to the studios and 230 College. My biggest encouragement would be to prepare and pack a healthy lunch and snacks, but I’d rather have you buy meals then skip them altogether. From the Government of Canada’s website, here are some tips on healthy choices when eating out:
- Choose a healthier cooking style. Cut down on fat by choosing foods that are baked, broiled, poached, or grilled instead of breaded or deep-fried.
- Enjoy a colourful meal. Try steamed vegetables, vegetable soups, fresh fruit or vegetable salads, and berries with yogurt.
- Order healthier salads. Dark green salads are usually healthier for you than higher fat Caesar, taco, potato, or pasta salads.
- Ask for sauce and dressing "on the side." Get gravy, sauce, and salad dressing on the side and use a small amount.
- Limit sodium. Ask for your meal to be cooked without salt or MSG (monosodium glutamate), a seasoning that is very high in sodium. For Asian-style foods, ask for half the soy sauce.
- Pick a better pasta sauce. Order tomato-based pasta sauces instead of alfredo or cheese sauces.
- Choose whole grains. Order sandwiches, subs, or wraps with whole grain bread, buns, or tortillas. Choose one spread instead of two (for example, mayonnaise or margarine, not both).
- Limit cakes, cookies, and rich desserts. Get a smaller size or share with someone.
- Drink smart. Choose water, milk (skim, 1%, or 2%), fortified soy beverage, or 100% juice instead of soft drinks or sweetened beverages.
I have provided their website if you want more info. That’s it for this week Daniels, I’ll see you Wednesday for the final Wellness Month post. Stay classy out there.