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Your Workout: Is Your Phone Hurting or Helping?

By Sara Butler

If you're like most people, your phone is constantly with you. That may be one of the best, and worst, things about advancing technology -- it allows you to be connected. But then again, it allows you to be connected.

When it comes to your workouts, you probably use your phone to queue up your favorite playlist or scroll through Facebook as you walk on the treadmill. After all, if your workout isn't chronicled on Instagram, did it really happen? It's really worth asking the big question: Is your phone a help or a hindrance to getting the most from your sweat sessions? Here are some of the pros and the cons to using your phone during a workout so you can decide what benefits you the most.

The Pros

The most beneficial thing your phone does for you during your workout provides the soundtrack. Studies have shown that music can actually give your workout performance a boost. When you listen to music during your workout, you enjoy it more and have a more positive attitude while you're doing it. That's a big plus.

Another pro of using your phone during a workout is that it allows you to do virtual training. You can hire and work with a fitness coach and never even be in the same room -- and that's a huge time saver.

The Cons

While phones have their pluses in a workout, they also have their minuses. The biggest minus to using your phone during a workout is that it distracts you. Researchers have discovered that texting or talking on the phone during a workout can reduce speed, which reduces heart rate and the amount of moderate to vigorous exercise you end up doing. Basically, it increases the chance that you'll have a low-intensity session that won't help you meet your fitness goals any faster.

Paying attention to your phone during a workout also impacts your ability to keep your balance. This increases your risk of injuries and falls when working out -- and no one wants to be that person at the gym who falls off their machine.

So, Yes or No?

It's difficult to be a multi-tasker when it comes to your phone and exercise. The best course of action may be to dust off your old MP3 player and use it to listen to tunes while you leave your phone in your locker.

Remember, it's not enough to simply exercise. If you want to get the most out of it, then you need to focus and push yourself. Only you can tell if your phone helps or hurts your motivation.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Mansfield, Tex.

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