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Get the perfect equipment for your home and travel gym in this week's update. Photo by Kelly Sikkema

DAOFitLife Weekly Update – August 11


Customizable DAOFitlife Meal Plan and Grocery List Links

Exercise Template Links

New app for helping anxiety

I was alerted to this new app, Worry Knot,  that works you through “mental knots” that can jam you up throughout the day with exercises that take only a few minutes.

First, the app asks you to articulate the new “knots”. Just putting the problem or recurring concern in writing helps. Sometimes this alone helps when you see it in print, because some of our worries are frankly absurd, and we don’t realize that until there is some kind of objective guardrail. Do you sometimes notice when you are sharing your worries with a friend or loved one, it kind of sounds silly when you say it out loud? This is what helps you see that.

After you input your “knot” the app asks you to scale your level of anxiety from 0-10. 0 is calm, whereas 10 is really stressed. This can be somewhat arbitrary, but that guides the process. 

Here is a visual of what the first two steps in the process:

The mechanism that the app uses to deal with the “knot” is a visualization exercise based on cognitive behavioral therapy. This involves conjuring a routine action that you have no emotional attachment towards. If you can’t think of one the app gives you options, like watching TV, riding a bike, cooking dinner, or brushing your teeth. I came up with doing laundry, which ironically helps me be more calm. Then once you come up with that, the app helps you transfer the neutral feeling you have about the routine task to the “worrying event.” Once you finish the exercise, the app stores the knot, which can help if you tend to worry about the same thing over and over. 

Home gym equipment

Are you still working out at home? In the current environment, that may be a good option. Or, you may have just gotten accustomed to the time and money saved from canceling your gym membership. It’s perfectly do-able to have a great home gym, even in an apartment. This article from Popsugar fitness goes through the best selection of exercise bands, mats, Swedhish balls, and even home TRX ropes.  This is also a good compromise if you think you may eventually go back to regular studio or gym training. If you are gung-ho at home and low on space, you can look into the Mirror or Tonal options, but given the priciness that’s a long-term commitment to make. You can find a review of the Mirror here and of Tonal here.

The equipment in the Popsugar post is also worth investing in if you are doing a hybrid model, for example, splitting your time between gyms/homes. The bands are especially good for travel. While it’s not on the list, I would also highly recommend getting a pair of disc sliders. I like this brand, which is carpet safe. They are also easy to pack and there are a lot of slider-based exercises you can do for your core, legs, arms, even back. Here’s a good example of a slider workout. from Self Magazine.

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