The Swim Professor

Jim Reiser, M.S.

Going to the Gym: Do You Really Need It?

One of the main debates going on these days is whether we really need to be going to the gym so often. There are all sorts of cloying reminders that everyone is, in fact, visiting the gym. Just think about it. Instagram photos, shred results from someone's work-out session and so on and so forth.

Staying healthy and staying well is difficult to maintain and it requires a lot of effort and a lot of focus. Yes, being in great shape will require dedication. However, the big question we ought to ask ourselves right now is – do we really need the gym for it?

It really depends on several things.

Where Do You Live?

If you live in a city that is just big and where all public places are either locked or not suitable for exercising, you can imagine how difficult it would be to get your healthy chunk of exercise for the day. To make things even a little more challenging, you can't even enter public schools. In many countries, especially in Europe, the use of such spaces is off-limits for people after school hours.

This makes things rather difficult. Free access to the facilities would be great. You would be able to go for a jog, to do some aerobic exercise and more. Yet, that's not always the case. Of course, there are other things to consider as well that can be equally important in determining your choice.

Going to the Gym: Do You Really Need It?

This being said, going to the gym can actually, perhaps, be a little more effective. Exercising with weights is generally considered to be a better way to burn fat which is really what we don't want to have as people. However, this takes a lot of effort and the gym doesn't seem like such a bad idea.

The Active Lifestyle

A better way of handling excess calories could perhaps be our focus on a more active lifestyle. This isn't necessarily to do with how often we hit the gym. Just think about it, you can be working as a cheap mobile locksmith.

Instead of taking a car everywhere, a bike would definitely do you a world of good. That's good for several reasons:

  • First, you don't need to contribute to polluting the environment.
  • Second, you will effectively be burning quite a few calories. And third, clients will also appreciate your eco approach to your profession.

Not to mention that you will keep in shape – no trouble there at all! So the argument about whether you should go to the gym or not is really a matter of personal choice. Some people prefer it this way. They also like the gym-going culture. Keeping in shape, staying healthy or just Instagram their success stories. There are all sorts and we all make the world.

How you choose to stay in shape is entirely up to you! However, do consider enjoying life a little more and moving around a little more as well. There's no need to commit yourself to a gym if you would just bike to work every once in a while.

June 23, 2016 at 6:15 pm Comments (0)

5 Life-Saving Tips All Parents Should Know

Unfortunately, official statistics speak about more than 600 children drowning on a yearly basis in the U.S. alone. Drowning is the number one cause of accidental death in children ages 1 to 4 according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Done the right way, prevention can help save lives, even the lives of your own children. As a parent, it falls under your direct responsibility to make sure your small ones are safe and sound 24/7, especially when around a pool area or even inside the bathtub.child swimming

While the majority of tragic drowning accidents occur in a backyard pool, there is no telling what could happen at the beach or around the house. It is, therefore, critical to learn some life-saving tips related to being in and around the water and constantly being aware of the drowning perils around us and our children.

Tip 1: Always Keep A Close Eye On Your Children While In The Water

Be it a public swimming pool, your own swimming pool at home, a hot tub or the ocean, it is imperative to keep a constant eye on your children. In only takes 25 seconds for a child to drown, no matter how shallow the water, according to Lois Lee, an emergency-medicine specialist at Boston Children’s Hospital. Children are not experienced swimmers and they require continuous surveillance whenever they are near water. You or another responsible adult should permanently supervise their behavior and stay within touching distance so you can immediately assist them in case of emergency. Children can easily panic, get tired while swimming or playing in the water or remain stuck underwater. Do not assume you will hear your child yelling for help on a crowded beach, while playing your favorite game of poker or reading some fresh casino reviews.  In reality, children drown quietly and without making any loud noise.

Tip 2: Put Your Phone Aside

We all tend to get lost in endless Instagram scrolling sessions and ignore what is happening around us whenever we can. As a rule of thumb, never pull out your phone when at the sea or at the pool together with your kids. Make sure you place it somewhere where you cannot access it easily so you are not tempted to check any incoming emails or text message. The few seconds you will spend replying to a text could lead to a tragedy. Do carry a fully charged phone on you so you can use it to call the authorities in case of an emergency. Memorize the address of the public swimming pool or whatever water you may be swimming in.

Tip 3: Put A Parent On Lifeguard Duty When Babysitting More Children

Going swimming with a group of children is a common occurrence in the life of most parents. When this happens, make sure you designate a parent as a lifeguard since most parents will tend to get distracted and look away from the swimming pool or the sea. You could also hire a professional lifeguard for more protection or have each of the parents take turns watching the kids every quarter of an hour.

The designated water watcher will be responsible for solely watching the children swim or play in the water. Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages when part of such a surveillance group.

Tip 4: Get Swimming Lessons For Your Children

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, all children ages 4 and over can take swimming lessons. Just make sure you do not mistakingly believe that simply because your kids are learning to swim, you will no longer need to carefully supervise them. Toddlers and preschoolers need a caregiver who can keep a close eye on them when going swimming.

Tip 5: Do Not Rely On Inflatable Toys And Water Wings

Keep in mind inflatable toys are not meant to act as life preservers. If your child cannot swim at the moment, have them use floating toys, but make sure you are with them while they do it. Beware of floating toys that could potentially trap your kids' legs and keep them underwater. Only opt for Coast Guard-approved life jackets and remove all floaties from the pool when not in use so your kids are not attracted into the water.

Encourage your children to befriend older kids at the pool and make sure each child knows where their buddies are at all times. This, however, should not be used as a means of replacing adult supervision at the pool.

June 16, 2016 at 9:18 pm Comments (0)

Is Independence Early in Life Important?

There have been various opinions of whether moving out early on as a child is actually helpful for your adult development or just the opposite. Some have argued that moving out helps teach you all the necessary habits that you might end up lacking later in life.

Fixing your own bed, cooking for yourself, cleaning after yourself, and, perhaps even more importantly, not being emotionally dependent on others.

However, others especially in southern Europe, have argued that living with your parents does make a modicum of sense as it allows you to save up and justify yourself economically. Not paying rent is definitely helpful.  There is merit to both arguments.

The Joy of Being on Your Own

In Scandinavian culture, for example, children tend to move out of their parents' houses very young. In fact, if you are 18, you are already eligible to leave the nest and be on your own. Paying rent could be covered by your parents – for a little while, but finding a job is paramount so that you may continue to develop yourself.

The Scandinavian people may look like distant and cold people with their choice to let children be on their own early on, but to their culture, 18 is already old enough. They have a point. Young men and women learn self-sufficiency and the value of life.

modern living style

Even though privilege still exists in society, you will be far less likely to find young people relying on their parents for support at the age of 18 in Sweden than you are to find an Italian who's nearing 30 and still living with their parents.

Strange as it is, southern Europeans tend to stick to each other more often and they don't perceive it as strange, as it does make some financial sense. Here are some excellent reasons why these people don't want to move out early on:

  • Economic sense
  • Shared bills
  • Close relations
  • Studying opportunities

Now, this may teach some people to be a little lazier at least in theory, but, Italians and other Mediterranean people, that usually move out of the home later just have to teach themselves some habits then, that's all.

The upside of living with people until very late, unlike Scandinavian people, is that you practice social behavior. Most Scandinavians tend to live on their own, but this is not necessarily ideal.

The Economics of Leaving the Nest Late

We have mentioned the evident logic of living with your family until you are older. Does it really make any economic sense? Aren't you intruding on your parents' finances if so? That depends.

If you are not contributing to the family budget, then certainly. Living in groups is clever. Even when it comes to something as simple as food, you will notice that at least one member of the family will have time to cook and prepare it and, in most cases, that means money saved.

Rent money is also great. An average young adult in Western Europe, for example, could save a sizeable chunk by the time they are in their mid-20s if they choose to live with their parents. Of course, it's always best to make a small review and weigh the pros and cons.

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Looking into the economic impact on living with your parents, you can definitely benefit in a great way:

  • You can start investing early
  • You can share food bills
  • You can afford to be choosy

All of these seem like simple and somewhat pretentious reasons but combine the ability to try and invest when you are 19 with the added benefit of never having to worry about ending up without roof because you have missed a rent payment.

Living at home definitely gives you some benefits that few other life decisions can.

Do What You Think Is Right

There is always some societal pressure to do what is right, but the truth is that you should only do what you personally think is right. With that being said, there is no shame in staying around your parents a little longer, especially if you feel comfortable with the idea.

Having a strong early start in life is important – whether this is finding a job that pays all the bills or buying a house or apartment before your independent peers could.

June 16, 2016 at 7:33 am Comments (0)