Developing your brain is just as important as developing your body. Numerous studies show how physical activity enhances brain functionality.
While you remember to fit a workout in every day or so, working out your brain is more challenging. The good news is, you can exercise your brain with apps on your phone. Many apps are cheap (or even free), easy to use, and you can pull them out whenever you've got some downtime.
Here are a few of my favorites.
Available on Android/iOS, Elevate offers mini-games that put your brain to the test. The app's activities test focus, memory, general comprehension and math skills.
Elevate can be addictive. Fortunately, the difficulty ramps up as you progress through the 30 unique challenges. So the more you play, the more you think.
Peak has great user experience. This app is full of brain-boosting mini-games that enhance your understanding of language, memory and boost attention span. The games have just enough variety to keep you interested. The best part is Peak is totally free on iOS and Android.
Available on android, Cognito is a story-based brain exercise app about a global spy mission. Cognito improves logic, memory and vocabulary through fun word-based, mini-games.
The app also keeps detailed track of your statistics to gauge skill improvement. Cognito even incorporates information from Apple's Health app like sleep quality and steps taken per day. Cognito is available at no cost, but you have to pay a small subscription fee for access to the entire collection of games.
Fit Brains Trainer
Fit Brains Trainer has nearly three dozen games divided up into specific groups to maximize the efficacy of mental workouts. The app alternates the order which the games are presented to keep the experience fresh. The games test and enhance language skills, concentration and memory.
These mental challenges are even customized to your emotional intelligence. The app also allows you to log in from your computer to finish your game if your phone dies.
Available on iOS/Android, Lumosity is also free. The app's mini-games are served up in a mix-and-match fashion. Lumosity features extensive user statistic tracking to show how performance improves as time progresses.
You will have to pay a fee to unlock additional games and features, but most people can enjoy the basic version alone.
While you're working out your brain, don't forget to work out your body, too. Test your fitness level with my Fitness Level Body Challenge below.
Many people would like to be able to deal with all of the ups and downs life throws them with a quiet strength and grace. But this is not always an easy task. Becoming mentally strong is not something that you can just decide to do, and it usually doesn't happen overnight.
Being mentally and emotionally strong means that you can behave normally no matter how much stress is presented. In other words, you can go about your business no matter what happens.
And it's a lot harder than it sounds.
What Does Being Mentally Strong Look Like?
What Can I Do To Become Stronger Mentally?
Look at the curve balls life throws at you as chances to get stronger. This will allow you to begin gathering wisdom and clarity, things you will need when life gets really hard. When something bad happens, if you are mentally tough, you won't automatically break down. Instead, you find answers and solutions to problems.
Toughening your mind is like training your body. It takes hard work and perseverance. You have to want it.
If you want it, follow these steps every day.
Who Can Motivate Me?
People who are great motivators can be anyone from coworkers or friends from a club or church group to counselors or fitness coaches. A personal trainer is a great option because trainers encourage you to be your best both mentally and physically. They do this through custom workouts, motivation and encouragement.
When looking for a personal trainer, search for someone who you're comfortable around, challenges you to push yourself, and is genuinely interested in your life in and out of the gym. If you are interested in building strength, both physically and mentally, give me a call today.
Sleep is crucial for optimal health. In fact, sleep is just as important in preventing certain issues as are diet and exercise. Getting the recommended seven to eight hours each night helps you feel better, think better, and make better choices.
But what happens when you simply can’t get the sleep you need? Below, we dive into the effects of sleep deprivation as well as some tips for getting through those days when you’re lacking adequate rest.
The Consequences Of Sleep Deprivation
Whether it’s a baby keeping you awake all night, a work deadline pushing back bedtime, or insomnia disrupting your sleep cycles, the side effects of living on little sleep are severe. Some of the consequences of repeated sleep loss include:
Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world. Things happen that may cause you to lose sleep. While we don’t recommend skipping sleep on a regular basis if you can help it, here are some tips for making it through the day after a sleepless night.
1. Skip The Sugar
Sleep deprivation disrupts the hormone in your body that tells your brain you’re full. This leads to increased cravings — especially of sugar —the following day. Giving into that craving causes even more fatigue.
2. Get Some Sun
Research has found that getting outside to take in some bright, natural light immediately upon waking has exhaustion-fighting benefits. These include boosting your alertness, raising your body temperature, and resetting your circadian rhythms.
3. Watch the Caffeine
Reaching for cup after cup of coffee on a sleep-deprived day is tempting, but overdoing it on caffeine doesn’t help your situation. While one or two cups of coffee in the morning is beneficial, loading up on it all day can cause you to crash later — and keep you from falling asleep when your head finally hits the pillow.
4. Indulge In A Cat Nap
It’s true that long naps usually leave you more fatigued than you were before you decided to get some mid-day sleep. However, short naps (think 25 minutes) have been found by experts to help people feel refreshed and more energized the rest of the day.
5. Work Out And Drink Water
The last thing you want to do when you’re tired is exercise. But studies have found that low-intensity workouts decrease fatigue by 65 percent. And don’t forget the water. Dehydration in and of itself leads to fatigue, so reach for water instead of coffee when that late afternoon sleepiness hits.
For more tips on getting through a sleep-deprived day and other ways to stay healthy, reach out to Amarillo fitness expert Ralph Roberts.
The average person's schedule is full of activities and responsibilities. From the eight-hour workday to family responsibilities, cooking and cleaning, we just don't have much free time. Plenty of people completely forego “alone time.”
In many of my Monday Motivations and Friday Reflections, I have stressed the importance of mental health. Taking time for yourself every week is a critical component of maintaining your health and empowering your mind. Here are five reasons you should reserve time for yourself every week.
Reasons To Find "Me" Time
1. Time for Introspection
When you are surrounded by other people, you’re constantly inundated with their opinions, questions and demands. You need time to perform some introspection. Use this time to ponder how you think and feel about the happenings in your life as well as the world around you. Give yourself this alone time each week so you can reflect on the past and plan for the future.
2. There Really is Value in Doing Nothing
Though society claims otherwise, there really is value to slowing down and taking it easy. It seems as though stimuli are bombarding us from every angle, whether it is kids, a spouse, pets, TV, radio or smartphones. The bottom line is that contemporary life moves way too fast. Spend some time on yourself and let everything slow down. Take this time to relax. Kick back your feet, recline and do exactly what you want at that moment. You can read, enjoy a delicious meal, listen to music or simply do nothing.
3. A Chance for Internal Growth
Perhaps the best reason to devote time to yourself is the chance to achieve inner growth. If you are constantly running from one appointment to another and interacting with people, you severely limit your chances to round your edges. Take some time for yourself and you will have the opportunity to change from a “static” person to a “dynamic” person.
4. Anxiety Relief
A steady stream of stimuli is terrible for your mental health. If you spend all of your time doing things and not thinking about what matters the most to you, you'll eventually become a nervous mess. Spend some time alone and you will have the opportunity to process all of the events that occurred during the previous days and week(s). As a result, you'll feel much less stressed.
5. Alone Time Boosts Your Physical Health
When you are surrounded by people you have few, if any, chances to exercise. We tend to gravitate toward others for socialization and fun. Spend more time alone and you will have the opportunity to exercise on a regular basis.
If you are unsure as to how to make the most of the "me time" you've reserved for exercising, give Ralph Roberts Personal Training a call. We will create a highly effective workout for your unique physical fitness needs and goals. Contact Ralph Roberts Training today to learn more.
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