Getting Energized in the Morning: Using the Xbox Kinect

Updated

So far, I’ve lost just under 70 pounds while using the Xbox Kinect almost exclusively for exercise. However, I’ve found it to be a good tool for getting energized as well. In fact, I am often far more productive after a morning session of tennis.

Take this morning for example. After spending about 40 minutes working up a sweat, I still feel like I can take on the world…and it’s almost lunch.




Getting Energized through Exercise

So, the Xbox Kinect isn’t some wonder tool for getting energized. In reality, any intense physical activity in the morning to work up a sweat is going to have the same effect. 1

It’s why a lot of people will go for a run first thing in the morning or tackle some other aerobic exercise. Personally, I can work up just as much of a sweat with a video game as people can at a gym.

The only real difference is that I am engaged by what I’m doing. And that’s really the key element.

Keeping the Mind Engaged

Gamification is something that spans across a myriad of industries. I’m not just talking about playing Mario Cart in the office, here. I’m actually focusing on the process of turning virtually anything into a game of some kind.

Gamifying fitness works by engaging the mind of an individual. If you view the activity as more of a game you like to play, you’re more inclined to continue.

It’s such an effective method that many companies are implementing some kind of gamification for employees. This goes beyond something like the “employee of the month” award…although that is also a form of gamification.

My point is you want to find an activity that will keep your attention. There’s a reason why so many people have workout DVDs collecting dust. After so long, it feels more like a mundane chore.

This is the primary reason I bought the Xbox 360 in the first place many years ago. In fact, most of my games are for the Kinect.

However, I am quite partial to Kinect Sports Season 2: Tennis and Avengers: Battle for Earth. But I do like to load up things like Kung Fu Panda. And my daughters love the Dance titles.

The reason why keeping the mind engaged works for getting energized in the morning is because you’re more likely to stick to a routine. When you’re having fun with exercise, you’ll find yourself eagerly waiting until the next morning.

Well, at least I do.

In reality, personal trainers can also see an increase in retaining clients through gamification. 2




Clearing the Mind Before Work

As a freelance writer, it’s in my best interest to keep my mind clear and focused. Whether I am working for a client or writing my blog posts, a distraction-free mind is a productive mind.

Studies show how exercise keeps the mind free of clutter. This doesn’t mean you have to stick to a regimen of workout routines that you hate, though.3

The truth of the matter is anything that can raise the heart rate and make you sweat is ideal. In my case, it’s using the Xbox Kinect for getting energized and focused first thing in the morning.

Think of physical activity as a way to shake off the dust of your mind after a good night’s rest. It’s all about keeping your head in the game regardless of what you do for a living.

I know I feel more focused in my daily activities if I grind out 40 minutes of tennis or a fighting game of some sort first thing in the morning.

Improving Creativity

Part of my routine of getting energized is making sure I can still be creative. As a writer, this is vital for clients. For one thing, you want the content to stand out and have a life of its own.

Otherwise, it’s easy to create pieces that are too similar to each other. And when you mass produce content like I do, being creative only serves to make sure I give clients exactly what they need.

And I’m not just blowing smoke here. In fact, Stanford researchers have found how even something as simple as walking can boost creativity levels as opposed to sitting idle.4

Physical activity simply helps me view the same subject from different perspectives. It’s one of the reasons why I can debate from either side quite effectively and why so many clients choose to send me work.

I adapt quickly to any content whether I am writing for or against a specific topic.

Improving the Mood

One of the biggest downfalls for many is having a negative mood before work. I’m not just talking about depression or stress. A negative mood could mean something as simple as having an “I don’t care” attitude when it comes to work.

Intense physical activity improves your mood. In fact, it’s often used to treat a myriad of mental illness including depression. This is because of the chemical reaction which takes place when you work out. 5

And part of maintaining a good work ethic is maintaining a positive attitude.

Speaking from personal experience, I know I feel better after getting energized with my Xbox Kinect. I tend to approach stressful clients better, the workflow improves and I am truly excited by the content I create.

However, exercise isn’t an instant fix for sluggishness. Depending on your own physiology, it could take days to weeks to see a vast improvement. However in many instances, exercise is more effective than many types of medication. 6

What’s Your Plan for Getting Energized in the Morning?

Everyone has unique needs and physical requirements. Some can jump right out of bed ready to go while others need physical movement to get the blood flowing.

I’m not saying that you’ll experience the same results I do from morning activity. But I can tell you how it’s done wonders for me. Find what gets you moving and improve your outlook of the day.

And keep in mind the data collected from studies and how they demonstrate the effectiveness of getting energized from exercise can also impact brain power.

You never know, physical activity may just keep you motivated to accomplish far more than you realize while promoting good health.




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Sources

  1. WebMD – https://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/exercise-for-energy-workouts-that-work#1
  2. Forbes – https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2017/06/16/how-fitness-gamification-will-change-the-way-personal-trainers-get-results/#3c0cb18bc527
  3. ABC News – https://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=99556&page=1
  4. Stanford News – https://news.stanford.edu/2014/04/24/walking-vs-sitting-042414/
  5. Live Strong – https://www.livestrong.com/article/530791-does-exercise-make-you-happy/
  6. Victoria State Government – https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/HealthyLiving/exercise-and-mood

Michael Brockbank

Since 2015, Michael has put in the effort to lose more than 80 pounds by gamifying fitness and eating proper portion sizes. He conducts extensive research into various health and fitness products to provide the best answers possible according to his own experience and knowledge.

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