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Be Happy, be healthy, be well!

This page shows the 10 most recent blog posts from the GLACUHO Heath and Wellness blog. To view the complete blog, including archives, visit the blog page at:
http://healthandwellness.glacuho.org/
You may also click the title of a particular blog post to view that article in its entirety.

10 Best Free Fitness AppsOpen in a New Window

10 Best Free Fitness Apps

This post comes from Stacey Grippa, Residence Hall Director at the University of Cincinnati! 

Are you interested in your own wellness but find yourself too engaged in your cell phone? Check out our list of top wellness apps you can use on your phone to help you reach those goals. From stress relief to sleep alarms, we’ve got the perfect app for you. 

Lumosity (Android, iOS)- This app allows users to turn learning into fun and games. Lumosity uses games and tools as a brain booster. Have you spent all day in long meetings? Simply log into Lumosity to work on your brain power through memory boosting and problem solving games and puzzles.

Lose It! (Android, iOS)- Lose It! works to help users achieve their wellness goals. This is the ultimate tracking app for all things exercise and nutrition. Users can log their food and exercise into the Lose It! app. This app includes a calories counter, recipe builder, and exercise planner. If you are passionate about your wellness and enjoy organization, this app is for you.

Sworkit (Android, iOS)- Sworkit stands for Simply Work It—and this app simply works. Users are able to select what type of workout they want to do each day and Sworkit builds you a plan to do it. Real trainers appear on your phone to help motivate you to keep going. The best part is that each workout is different so you will never get bored!

Happier (Android, iOS)- This app serves as a gratitude journal to help you capture those moments of happiness. Happier allows you to write down notes and include pictures of those happy moments throughout your day. This app also includes simple steps and techniques you can do anywhere to add more happiness to your life.

Running For Weight Loss (Android, iOS)- Running For Weight Loss works to do exactly what is says..help you lose weight while running. Instead of simply tracking your runs, this app has programs designed specifically to focus on weight loss. This app focuses directly on weight loss by combining running, walking, and sprinting.  The app also includes both audio coaching, running music, and 5k or 10k training plans.

Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock (Android, iOS)- This app allows you to focus on another part of your wellness-your sleep! It uses your smart phone’s built in accelerometer to monitor your movement as you sleep. This app can even help wake you in your lightest sleep phase in order to help you feel well rested. It comes with 14 alarms and a customizable wake up window.

Nike+ Run Club (Android, iOS)- Download this app for an all-around run tracker. Nike+ Run Club includes a variety of coaching plans designed for all types of runners. This app also makes for some neat social media posts—with their additional social networking tool.

Pact (Android, iOS)- If you struggle with accountability, this is the app for you. Pact allows you to sign up for gym, veggie, or food tracking. Users can select an amount of money to put on the line for their goals. If you fail to meet your goal, you are charged that selected amount of money. If you meet your goal though, you are able to earn money from other members on the app.

Couch to 5K (Android, iOS)- Are you interested in participating in the GLOWCUHO 5K but aren’t sure where to start? This is the place! Download Couch to 5K for a free eight-week program to get you started. This app will give you three workouts per week to help prepare you for the next run or simply help you get started.

Mindshift (Android, iOS)- This app is focused to help with anxiety. By providing strategies on how to cope with anxiety, Mindshift allows users to take control of their anxiety. This app includes advice for all ages and all situations one might come across. Download this app for a perfect break during your stressful experience.







 

10 Great Ways to Start Your DayOpen in a New Window

This post comes from GLACUHO Health & Wellness Committee Member Amy Lorenz, Operations Manager for Centennial and Falcon Heights at Bowling Green State University.

A quick Google search will show you several examples of great ways to start your day.  Many leaders have consistent morning schedules, and almost everyone advocates for getting up a little bit earlier (!) than you might want to wake up.  GLACUHO scouted out several examples, and here are 10 consistently, time-tested great ways to start your day: 
  • Get a good night’s sleep: Starting your day off right means getting plenty of sleep.  You might have to bump your bedtime back.  Ideally, you should aim for at least 7-9 hours of sleep each night to take full advantage of the health benefits of your sleep cycle.
  • Change the lighting in your room: Avoid screens (phones, television, and so on) at least two hours before bedtime, and open your blinds in the morning.  We spend so much time in front of fake lighting that it’s time to take back natural lighting and our circadian rhythms.
  • Workout: After a day at work, it can be hard to stay motivated to workout at 5 or 6 pm.  Try to switch your workout routine to the morning.  If you do not want to move your full workout, do some gentle stretching, yoga, or a few squats and pushups to help get your metabolism revved up for the day.
  • Get up 15 minutes earlier: Yes, just 15 minutes!  Countless people recommend a super early wake up time, but even just an extra 15 minutes will help in numerous ways.  That little buffer of time gives you a chance to wake up more peacefully, grab a good breakfast, and help you to not be in a rush.
  • Eat a good breakfast: Most of the breakfast items we eat are processed cereals and grains, and those choices do not keep you full in the long wrong.  Choose a breakfast with protein, like a scrambled egg and toast or banana with peanut butter to keep you full longer.
  • Drink water: When you wake up, you are dehydrated from your night’s sleep, especially if you are a mouth-breather.  Drink a tall glass of water to help hydrate your organs and muscles.  Plus, you’ll be well on your way toward meeting your daily hydration goals!
  • Set your goals for the day: Many of us rush through the day without a set plan in place.  Take a few minutes to list out your most important tasks and goals for the day.  These can be personal and professional: walk at least 10,000 steps, finish a major project before 10 am, and so on.
  • Play music: Music has been shown to help you channel your dreams and goals into reality.  Plus, upbeat music helps to wake you up and get you going!
  • Do a quick chore: Groan…I know.  You know what’s more work than a morning chore?  A billion after work chores.  Knocking even one item off your home to-do list can keep you motivated to finish the rest in the evening.  So, switch a quick load of laundry, unload the dishwasher, or wipe down the counters.
  • Do something you’re passionate about: Hopefully, you are passionate about your work, but what I really mean is, spend some time jamming out on your guitar, doodling a quick sketch, read for five minutes...just find some time to do you.


If you made it through this list, you are probably thinking that it’s hard to knock these items out with just 15 extra minutes, and that’s true!  Pick 1-3 that make the most sense for you, and knock them out of the park.

 

September 2017 - Saving ChallengeOpen in a New Window

This post comes from GLACUHO Health & Wellness Committee Member Brittney Vietti, Area Coordinator at Augustana College.

Saving money can be tough! We think this saving calendar from dontpayfull.com is great as there isn't a dollar amount attached to it, but gives useful tips towards being more financially mindful in general. Give it a try this month and see how you do!


 

July 30-day Ab ChallengeOpen in a New Window


July's 30-Day Challenge comes from this website.

Join us as we work towards a tighter core before August!



 

How to Drink More Water Without Trying Too Hard!Open in a New Window

This post comes from GLACUHO Health & Wellness Committee Member Amy Lorenz, Operations Manager for Centennial and Falcon Heights at Bowling Green State University.

We’ve reached the end of June, and hopefully, you have been following the GLACUHO social media sites for our 30-day water challenge.  If not, or if you have struggled to get started, no problem!  We are here to give you some tips on how to make sure you continue to drink enough water every day.

Experts suggest drinking at least 8, 8-oz glasses of water every day, for a total of 64 ounces of water.  If you want to truly meet your own personal water needs, take your weight in pounds and divide it by two, and that is how many ounces of water you should drink.  A person who weighs 150 pounds needs 75 ounces of water each day.

Drinking water is important for several bodily functions. 
  • Water helps to regulate several bodily functions, such as sweating, body temperature, digestion, and saliva production.
  • Water helps you to absorb nutrients from your food…so between the water and better food absorption, you feel fuller.
  • Water helps to control muscle fatigue.  If you are exercising, proper fluid intake ensures the appropriate balance of electrolytes and fluids in your muscles.
  • Water helps to moisturize your skin. 
  • Water helps insure that your kidneys and liver are most effective of ridding your body of toxins and waste.
However, 64 or more ounces of water is a lot of water if you are not used to drinking it, or if you are like me, and spend the first few hours of the day guzzling coffee!  If you are just getting started, here are a few ideas to help you work your way up to getting your daily quota:

  • Start small.  If you have been drinking 16 ounces of water a day, try to build up to 24 ounces the next day, and 32 ounces the next.  These slight changes will add up!
  • Try drinking infused water.  If you love flavored beverages like coffee and soda, plain water might not sound tasteful enough for you.  An easy, yummy drink is to drop several frozen strawberries into water bottle, and fill it with cold water.
  • Create daily hacks to drink more water: drink a glass of water after every bathroom trip, before each meal and snack, or at certain time intervals.
  • Invest in a fun water bottle and always have it on your desk.

Hopefully, these tips will help you continue to work toward better hydration and health.  Water cheers to you all, and happy summer!

 

The One Workout You Are Forgetting About—The Brain Workout!Open in a New Window

This post comes from Stacey Grippa, Residence Hall Director at the University of Cincinnati! 

While health and well-being are two very trending topics this year, we often forget how many areas health and wellness actually includes. Working on your own wellness means more than going to the gym each morning or meal prepping on Sunday evenings. Wellness is more than just physical wellness. It can be financial wellness, occupational wellness, spiritual wellness, and one we often forget--intellectual wellness.  Staying creative is an important part of being successful. By not simulating our brains, we are not using all of the potential our brains have.

Brain teasers and logic puzzles are used to encourage our brain to exercise. Much like physical wellness is important, it is also important for us to value our cognitive wellness. Brain teasers boost brain activity, help reduce the risk for dementia, improve concentration, and enhance memory and processing speeds.

Top ways to exercise your brain today:

  • Purchase a daily calendar with puzzles or problems. This will allow you to spend a few minutes each morning exercising your brain.
  • Use brainteasers in weekly staff meetings, one on ones, and other group meetings. This can be a fun way to work with colleagues and spark up a bit of competitiveness among the staff.
  • Download crossword, Sudoku, or puzzle apps on your phone. Use time in between meetings or walking across campus to stimulate your brain.
  • Visit www.daisybrains.com to participate in brain games, logic puzzles, and drawing challenges. Add this to your bookmarks page and take a break during those long days in the office.


 Now that you have learned the benefits of working out your brain, let’s start with a short warm up. Answers are at the bottom of the post!

  1. Question: First I threw away the outside and cooked the inside, then I ate the outside and threw away the inside, what did I eat?
  2. Question: What makes more as you take them?
  3. Question: A boy is walking down the road with a doctor. While the boy is the doctor’s son, the doctor isn’t the boy’s father. Who is the doctor?
  4. Question: I am the beginning of sorrow and the end of sickness. You cannot express happiness without me yet I am in the midst of crosses. I am always in risk yet never in danger. You may find me in the sun but I am never out of darkness. What am I?
     
  5. Question: The number 8,549,176,320 is a unique number. What is so special about it?
     
  6. Question: What has a mouth but cannot eat, what moves but has no legs and what has a bank but cannot put money in it?
  7. Question: When can you add two to eleven and get one as the correct answer?
     
  8. Question: What is always coming but never arrives?
  9. Question: Two girls were born to the same mother, on the same day, at the same time, in the same month and year and yet they’re not twins. How can this be? 
Answers:
  1. Corn on the cob.
  2. Footsteps.
  3. The doctor is the boy’s mother.
  4. The letter S.
  5. This is the only number which includes all the digits arranged in alphabetical order.
  6. River.
  7. When you add two hours to eleven o-clock, you get one o-clock
  8. Tomorrow.
  9. The two babies are two of a set of triplets.
Always remember, even if you cannot solve the riddle or puzzle, your brain will always appreciate the workout!


 

Basic 5k Training PlanOpen in a New Window

This 5k training plan comes from Road Runners Club of American certified running coach, GLACUHO Health and Wellness Committee Member and Bowling Green State University employee Amy Lorenz.

Hello, GLACUHO runners and hopeful runners!  

We know several of you are thinking about training for the GLOWCUHO 5K.  I am a Road Runners Club of American certified running coach, and I wanted to share a basic, four-week training plan to help you build up your stamina.  Please note that this plan will not fully get you to running a 5K, as four weeks is too short for most people to effectively do that.  This is a great plan to start in June or July, before August training kicks back in, to give you a good endurance base.

Before we get started, here are a few overall running tips:
  • Walking is your friend!  If you are not running yet, start by walking 30 minutes, 3-5 times a week. Walking is the activity that most closely mimics the biomechanics of running, even more so than the elliptical.
  • You should build up your mileage by no more than 10% a week. So, if you ran 10 miles one week, you can run 11 miles the next.
  • If you are squeezing a run in between all your activities, do not eat a bunch of fiber before you run…unless you want some tummy trouble!
The plan below is based on someone who can run 1 minute without stopping and has been walking at least 30 minutes 3-4 times a week.  Your running portions should be runs, not sprints.  Try to go the speed you think you could continue for 5-10 minutes.  Your walking portions should be a steady, moderate pace.

Sunday
Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday


Off
Walk 4 minutes, run 1 minute. Repeat 6 times.
Walk 4 minutes, run 1 minute. Repeat 6 times.


Off
Walk 3:30 minutes, run 1:30 minutes. Repeat 6 times.
Walk 3:30 minutes, run 1:30 minutes. Repeat 6 times.
Hike/walk for 60 minutes at a moderate pace.


Off
Walk 3 minutes, run 2 minutes. Repeat 6 times.
Walk 3 minutes, run 2 minutes. Repeat 6 times.


Off
Walk 3:30 minutes, run 2:30 minutes. Repeat 5 times.
Walk 3:30 minutes, run 2:30 minutes. Repeat 5 times.
Hike/walk for 60 minutes at a moderate pace.


Off
Walk 3 minutes, run 3 minutes. Repeat 5 times.
Walk 3 minutes, run 3 minutes. Repeat 5 times.


Off
Walk 2:30 minutes, run 3:30 minutes. Repeat 5 times.
Walk 2:30 minutes, run 3:30 minutes. Repeat 5 times.
Hike/walk for 60 minutes at a moderate pace.


Off
Walk 2 minutes, run 4 minutes. Repeat 5 times.
Walk 2 minutes, run 4 minutes. Repeat 5 times.


Off
Walk 2 minutes, run 5 minutes. Repeat 4 times.
Walk 2 minutes, run 5 minutes. Repeat 4 times.
Hike/walk for 60 minutes at a moderate pace.

Don’t negate the awesomeness of the Saturday hike!  You can do it either weekend day. A long walk is a perfect way to work on your endurance and building your slow-twitch muscle fibers.  It also provides great recovery from your work earlier in the week.


Happy running!

 

May 2017 Push-Up ChallengeOpen in a New Window

May’s 30-Day Challenge comes from this website.

Join us as we work towards holding a-5 minute plank!  The modification chart is shared with you from muscletransform.com – pick a level that you  are most comfortable with and crush this challenge!


Examples of plank form.

 

April 2017 Push-Up ChallengeOpen in a New Window

April's 30-Day Challenge comes from Program from Luz Plaza at Livestrong.com. Join us as we work to tackle 60 push-ups by the end of the month!
Program from Luz Plaza at Livestrong.com
http://www.livestrong.com/blog/30-day-push-challenge/

 

Working Toward Occupational WellnessOpen in a New Window

This post comes from Leanne Barson, Hall Director at Baldwin Wallace University

In Residence Life, and student affairs in general, self-care and wellness have become buzzwords of sorts.  But, “wellness” is such a broad term, what does it really mean?  How do we achieve this farfetched idea, “wellness”?  Wellness is defined as the quality or state of being healthy in body and mind.  There are many dimensions of wellness; social, emotional, spiritual, environmental, physical, and occupational.  These dimensions are often very much intertwined.  I find that when not making occupational wellness a priority, my other dimensions of wellness seem to lack.  For example, when I’m too consumed with work, I can’t seem to find the time to exercise, spend time with friends, meditate or have “me time”, read a book, or do general self-care.  So, how can we achieve the most sought after “work-life balance”?  Well, I haven’t quite figured it out yet, but I do have a few tips!   
  
Email – It is the most utilized form of communication in our field, but it can be hard to step away from it when you leave the office for the day or weekend.  Working in Residence Life, it is easy for us to get in the habit of checking it every few hours, afraid of missing an important email or some sort of emergency notification.  However, to really enjoy and be invested in your time spent with your significant other, family and friends, or yourself, it is important to leave work out of the equation.  Once you leave work, do not reply to emails.  If there is an emergency, trust that you will get a phone call or text message.

Social life – Your coworkers are your friends – AWESOME!  Seriously, that is so great!  However, “leaving the kids at home” is easier said than done.  When I go out with my coworkers, no matter how hard we try, the conversation always comes back to what happened at work last week, problems with our student staffs, what kind of incident we handled last night -  AHH MAKE IT STOP!  I hate talking about work outside of work; it makes me feel like I’m still working.  That said, it is so important to have another set of friends that are outside of work or our field.  Maybe you have moved to a new place for work and are trying to branch out and form new friendships.  There are tons of ways to do this, including participating in a fitness class, trying a new coffee shop, joining an intramural sports team, or just exploring your local area.  The key to making new friends is to not be shy and to initiate conversation with strangers!

Finding your away space – Having a live-in position is hard!  When I started working as a Hall Director, I found myself going days at a time without physically going outside or leaving my building because my office and apartment were in the same building - so not cool!  Over time, I learned that I must have what I call my away place.  Mine turned out to be the gym in the next town over.  Sure, I have a free membership to my institution’s Rec Center, so some people see my investment in my off-campus gym membership as a waste of money.  However, I don’t see it that way.  When working out (my form of stress relief) in the on-campus Rec Center, it kept me in my work bubble because I constantly worried about running into those lovely undergraduate scholars of ours and having to stop my workout to manage something.  So, find your away place that allows you to be an actual person; not a supervisor, not an advisor, not a coworker, not the residence life person, but just an average Joe (or Joanne, whichever you prefer).

Time off – “I’m in housing, I don’t have days off.” -- Actually, you do! Use those days!  There are always going to be things that need to be done, meetings to be held, and students to be helped, no matter what time of year.  If you wake up feeling less than 100%, need a personal day, or just want to play hooky, you have vacation/sick days for a reason – don’t let them go to waste!  As far as vacation goes – plan ahead of time!  The summer may be the most logical time to plan an extended vacation with the family, but you can totally swing a long-weekend getaway if you plan around it!  Don’t feel guilty - you can’t pour from an empty cup.

Saying no – I am a people pleaser.  Therefore, I have a hard time saying no, especially when an opportunity presents itself that either helps someone else or serves as a great development opportunity for myself.  When I think about it though, am I really helping myself or others if I am stressing myself out or committing to something I don’t have the time to do well?  Probably not.  I get it, you don’t want to say no because you don’t want to disappoint or hurt the person asking you to do whatever it is they are asking you do to.  But you must have boundaries.  What are those?!  Boundaries are literally defined as a line that marks the limit of an area.  It is up to you to know and articulate your limits to yourself and to others.  It is ok to say no.  I’m not saying you should say no to everything, but I am saying that your accomplishments rely on your ability to say yes and no depending on the situation. Only you know your limits, make sure you acknowledge and respect them.  If you struggle to determine or enforce your boundaries, think of creating personal policies. For instance, if you are asked to volunteer at an event on a Sunday, but prefer to spend Sunday reading and doing laundry, you might say, “Sorry, it’s my personal policy to reserve Sunday for personal time.”  I also find that scheduling personal time into my calendar and explaining that I have another commitment, if a volunteer event or something similar comes up, is beneficial as well.

All of these things are certainly easier said than done.  What are one or two of these things you can commit to today?  If you need an accountability partner, bring this topic to your next team meeting and encourage others to join you!