THE STRAIGHT UP
The Secret to Exercising in 2019 Never Underestimate Your Habits
Let’s talk about NewYear’s resolutions. More specifically, let’s talk about how they never seem to work. I recently started reading “Atomic Habits: An Easy and ProvenWay to Build Good Habits and Break Bad Ones” by James Clear. This book offers great advice for reprogramming our behavior to lead healthier, happier lives. It also highlights why resolutions don’t stick. the reasons you haven’t been working out in the first place: your habits. Resolutions fail because you don’t change your behavior unless you change your habits first. If you want to make a change, you need to “give your habits a time and a space to live in the world,” as Clear says. He offers a strategy to achieve this goal: I will [BEHAVIOR] at [TIME] in [LOCATION]. This is a strategy I’ve put into practice myself. Making a resolution to “work out more” or “get in shape” doesn’t work because it ignores
always been a priority. But recently, I reached a certain birthday we shall not discuss, and I realized I wanted to be able to have fun hiking, biking, and playing with my dog for years to come. That meant I needed to start exercising again. One of my patients, Mike, is a trainer at a fitness bootcamp, and I decided to work out with him. But it wasn’t enough to just decide to work out. Like James Clear points out, you need to make a plan for your habits to exist. I’m at the office all day, so I can only work out in the morning or evening. Since my brain and my body are exhausted after work, there’s almost no chance I’ll work out in the evening. If I want to get in shape, I need to work out in the morning. Fortunately, I’m an early bird and Mike has a class at 5:30 a.m. Following Clear’s advice, I made a plan: “I will work out at 5:30 a.m. at Mike’s class.” In addition to reframing my habits, I’ve also discovered a trick that helps get me out of bed and to the gym each morning: I sleep in my workout clothes. I’m serious! Like pajamas, workout clothes are comfortable, so they’re easy to sleep in.You save time in the morning because you just have to pull on your shoes and head out the door. Plus, a study in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology found clothing can influence your behavior. You’re more likely to exercise if you’re already dressed for a workout.
Once I began exercising, I started to enjoy all those great things people talk about when they exercise. I sleep better, I’m less stressed out, I have more energy, and I’ve gotten stronger. That last one is a big deal because there is another reason I’m so psyched to get in shape. My friend Joanne lives in Australia, and she is the world’s fastest walker. Last time I visited her, we walked around everywhere and she kicked my butt. I’m going back to Australia in April, and this time, when she takes me on a forced march around Sydney, I’ll be right there with her. My goal isn’t just to keep up — this time, she’s going to be the one begging for mercy. If you want to make a NewYear’s resolution that sticks — or outwalk your friends Down Under — I highly recommend first looking at your habits. James Clear’s “Atomic Habits” is a great place to start. –Dr. Leslie Pitner
I’ve spent years knowing I need to take better care of my physical fitness, but it hasn’t
“FOLLOWING CLEAR’S ADVICE, I MADE A PLAN: 'I WILL WORK OUT AT 5:30 A.M. AT MIKE’S CLASS.' "
Smile big. Smile often. • 803-781-5225
SOCIAL MEDIA REMINDERS FOR PARENTS
Social media has been making the
On a less disturbing note, social media content is permanent. Even after you delete a post or a photo, it leaves a digital footprint that could follow your child throughout their education and could even affect job interviews or future relationships. It’s still possible for you to foster a sense of privacy in the digital age, but it’s important to respect what your child deems private information. After all, it’s their future. Consider these rules before you share. 1. Ask your child’s permission. If they can speak, then they can speak for themselves. Children love to see photos of themselves, but they may also be aware of what they are and aren’t comfortable with, even at a young age. 2. Limit the nudity. Everyone loves a beach day, but think twice before posting swimsuit or skinny-dipping pictures. Opt to post safer photos, like the family posing prior to fun in the sun. 3. Check your settings.Your privacy settings may be exposing your family to more people than you know, and if you feel the need to share every minute of your child’s day online, all the teeth are where they should be, if there are any extra teeth we need to worry about, and double-check that everything is moving in the right direction. If anything looks funny, she can make sure it gets fixed early on. Most kids who come in for this examdon’t need any sort of treatment. And if treatment is called for, it’s often nothingmore than extracting a baby tooth a little early so the permanent tooth has room to grow. But this small treatment canmake a huge difference. Canines — I mean the teeth, not dogs —have a tendency to wander when they are growing in. If mymom takes a panoramicX-ray and sees a canine growing the wrong way, she can take out the baby canine early, creating a pathway for the permanent tooth to follow.This can help ensure the permanent canine grows in straight and prevents the need for major treatment when the patient is a teenager.
making these settings airtight will protect your children and their reputations.
world smaller than ever. The distance among cross-country relatives and friends shrinks
Consider some of these safe alternatives to regular public posting:
1. Tinybeans.com is a secure photo- sharing website for parents of babies and young children. The digital photo album app allows you to share photos with only the people you choose. 2. Create a separate, secure group on Facebook. Family, friends, or coworkers in closed groups can still fawn over their little ones in a personal, safe setting. Despite the dangers your digital life can elicit, you don’t have to avoid the digital world completely. Social media is still a great tool for families to stay connected,
with each post or Skype call. And instant updates from loved ones are particularly valuable during the
holidays. That Christmas morning video call means Grandma andGrandpa get to see their grandkids in their new holiday outfits, but so can online predators. According to digital and safety experts, half of the photos filtered onto the darknet are stolen from parents’ social media accounts. If these predators are privy to your photos, they’re also able to snag
your location and other sensitive information, putting you and your children at physical risk as well. as long as you take precautions. Go ahead and brag about your kids online — just be safe and considerate of your child’s wishes. FROM THE OFFICE OF BUSTER
When Should Kids See the Orthodontist? G’DAY, MATE!
A fewmonths ago, I celebratedmy 1st birthday. It was awesome! I got to spend the whole day withmymomand dad, just driving around and eating good food. I couldn’t have asked for a better birthday. In human years, I’maround 8, whichmeans if my permanent teeth weren’t already perfectly straight, I’d be going to the orthodontist for my first growth and development exam. Most parents wait to bring their kids to the orthodontist until they need extensive treatment to fix their permanent teeth, but early visits can help reduce the need for invasive treatment altogether. When patients are around 7 or 8 years old, Dr. Pitner can take a panoramicX-ray to see all their teeth at once—even the permanent teeth that are just about to erupt.With this, she can tell if
Teeth want to grow in the right way, but sometimes they need a little help. If you are able to spot red flags early, you can take simple steps today and prevent major problems in the future. Be sure to call 803-781-5225 to schedule this free examand help your pup— I mean kid —get the right start with a great smile. –Buster
Not Hitting Any PRs Lately? Time to Exercise Your Mental Fitness
Sports psychology has helped athletes, like Michael Jordan, and golf pros, like Greg Norman, become legends. “What separates the good from the great is between the ears, the way they talk to themselves, their inside communication,” says Dr. Sylvain Guimond, a sports psychologist. World-class athletes stay mentally tough and visualize their victories to propel them past competitors. This same strategy can help you take your training to the next level. Outside of the professional sphere, mental exercises based on sports psychology can help you hit new PRs by changing the way you think about your performance. Psychologists have found that believing you can succeed — whether it’s scoring a goal or stealing a base — is key to actually succeeding. One of the newer techniques to enter the sports psychology scene, neuro- linguistic programming (NLP), aims to instill this belief in athletes. While the subjective
nature of NLP makes its effectiveness hard to verify, NLP reportedly increases confidence in athletes, as Rhonda Cohen notes in “Sport Psychology: The Basics: Optimising Human Performance.” It focuses on building confidence through visualization and speech patterns to help athletes tune into a winning mindset. While the name might sound complex, NLP is anything but — it can be as simple as choosing a song that you associate with confidence and playing it on repeat for 10 minutes as you visualize yourself getting a PR for squats. Before your next workout, play the song as an audio cue to go into that confident state of mind. Mindfulness exercises can also be extremely effective at improving athletic performance. These exercises, like yoga and meditation, build a strong foundation for mental fitness. By learning how to ease your thoughts and calm your mind, you’ll be better prepared to
call on techniques like positive thinking and mantras during your workouts so you can, as one NLP expert says, “consciously enter a state of peak performance.” Even as you’re incorporating sports psychology techniques into your routine, remember that they’re only going to be effective if you put in the work when you’re training. As Cohen says, “It is one thing to think about or want to change; it is another thing to go ahead and actually do it.”
CHICKEN CHOP SUEY
2 large or 4medium chicken thighs 3 pounds bok choy, cut into 3–4-inch ribbons 4 tablespoons vegetable oil 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch, mixed with 4 tablespoons water 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
1. In large pot, boil three cups of water. Add chicken and reduce to simmer, cooking for 30 minutes. Remove chicken and let cool.Once cooled, remove skin and bones, chop, and set aside. Reserve the cooking liquid. 2. In a large skillet over high heat, heat vegetable oil. Once simmering, add bok choy and cook for 1 minute,
reserved cooking liquid, cover skillet, and cook for 2minutes. Remove cover and cook for an additional 5minutes.Transfer bok choy to a plate. liquid and chicken to the pan, maintaining high heat. Heat chicken, then add oyster sauce, sugar, cornstarch-and-water mixture, sesame oil, and bok choy. Season to taste, toss together, and serve over rice.
3. Add remaining cooking
stirring throughout. Add half of
Smile big. Smile often. • 803-781-5225
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5953 Wescott Rd. Columbia, SC 29212 803-781-5225 Monday–Thursday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. www.drpitner.com
Why Does Dr. Pitner Sleep in Her Workout Clothes?
Staying Safe on Social Media Is First Grade Too Early for the Orthodontist? Tapping Into Sports Psychology to Optimize Performance Chicken Chop Suey
Start the New Year Right Resolve to Have More Fun in 2019
‘Arsenic and Old Lace’ Where: TownTheatre, Columbia When: Jan. 4–20 Admission: $15–$25 Website: TownTheatre.com/centennial In this dark comedy, Mortimer Brewster just got engaged, and he can’t wait to tell his family. But Mortimer’s life gets turned upside down when he discovers his sweet spinster aunts have spent years poisoning lonely old men and burying them in the basement. This family secret threatens to be revealed when Mortimer’s evil brother comes to town on Halloween night. Equal parts hilarious and horrifying, you don’t want to miss out on a play The NewYork Times called “so funny that none of us will ever forget it.”
The Great Amazing Race Columbia Where: Sesquicentennial State Park, Columbia When: Sunday, Jan. 27 at 2 p.m. Admission: See website for tickets. Website: GreatAmazingRace.com/columbia.html On your mark, get set, go! Bring the family out for this one-of-a-kind race modeled after the TV show “The Amazing Race.”Walk, run, or jog to each new challenge with your partner using teamwork to come out on top. Come
Marvel Universe Live! Where: Colonial Life Arena, Columbia When: Feb. 1–3 Admission: See website for tickets. Website: MarvelUniverseLive.com Can’t wait for the next Avengers movie to hit the big screen?You’re in luck! All your favorite characters from the Marvel movies and classic comic books are joining forces in an incredible live show. When the evil Loki threatens the universe, it’s up to superheroes like Spider-Man, BlackWidow, Star Lord, and more to save the day with daring stunts and breathtaking special effects. Get your tickets now before the show swings out of Columbia for good.
ready to get a little wet and dirty because there will be prizes awarded to the fastest teams. Register today and get ready for a race that's more fun than any 5K you could run this year!
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