How many of us are guilty of obsessively checking social media while we’re at the gym? Go ahead and raise your hand. Scrolling the timeline has become so habitual we don’t even know how often we do it, but is it getting in the way of an effective workout? Could be.
It goes without saying that using your cellphone while working out is distracting. All of a sudden you’re peddling slower and slower while you respond to a text, until suddenly you’re not peddling at all. That quick 10 seconds of rest turns into one minute, and now your heart rate has dropped. Sound familiar?
A study done published in Computers in Human Behaviour showed that texting during your workout actually does greatly decrease it’s effectiveness. People who texted during a 20-minute workout spent almost 10 of those minutes in a low-intensity zone, and only seven minutes in high intensity. Those who worked out without a phone spent only 3 minutes in low intensity, and almost 13 minutes in high intensity. Which means social media, texting, and emails can wait.
Cell phone usage is not only a distraction but also effects your balance. This can become a safety issue when running on the treadmill or using fast speed on an elliptical. No one wants to take a tumble in the gym, especially because you just had to retweet your fav.
Lastly taking too many gym selfies can cause too much rest in between exercise sets, which ultimately will effect your results. It’s suggested to take between 30 to 60 seconds rest, and going over that can limit the intensity of your workout. Your mind can get unfocused, unmotivated, and finishing feels even harder than before.
But checking your phone is a habit, so here’s how you can limit your phone time and make the most of your workout. Scroll the timeline in between the completion of a workout and not in between sets. For example, do a quick check as you transition from the treadmill to the squat machine, or from the leg extension to the rower. Try not to check it at all during cardio, unless you just have to change the song on your playlist. Stay focused it’s only for a few minutes!