Sunday October 20, 2019

How Often You Exercise Depends on Your Personality

If you have not been able to meet your gym goals despite persistant efforts to wake up early or hitting that running session or exercise, blame it on your personality

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exercise, workout, lifestyle, fitness, personality
Self-reported levels of the trait called 'planfulness' may translate into real world differences in behaviour. Pixabay

If you have not been able to meet your gym goals despite persistent efforts to wake up early or hitting that running session or exercise, blame it on your personality.

According to researchers from University of Oregon, some people seem to be able to more consistently meet their goals than others, but it remained unclear if personality traits encourage individuals to achieve long-term goals in their day-to-day lives.

Conscientiousness has long been tied with healthy behaviours.

Narrowing their focus to “planfulness” — lead researcher Rita M. Ludwig and colleagues Sanjay Srivastava and Elliot T. Berkman, they zeroed in on psychological processes — such as mental flexibility, and a person’s ability to make short-term sacrifices in pursuit of future success that contribute directly to achieving long-term goals.

“There indeed appears to be a certain way of thinking about goals that correlates with long-term progress,” said Ludwig.

“What’s new in this study is that we used an objective measure of goal progress that could be recorded as participants naturally went about their lives: their check-ins at a local gym”.

exercise, workout, lifestyle, fitness, personality
The participants, many of whom were students, provided a written description of their exercise plans and completed measures of self-control and grit. Pixabay

The findings, published in the journal Psychological Science, suggest that self-reported levels of the trait called ‘planfulness’ may translate into real world differences in behaviour.

The team analyzed gym attendance of 282 participants over a 20-week period.

The participants, many of whom were students, provided a written description of their exercise plans and completed measures of self-control and grit.

While all participants experienced a similar decline in gym attendance over the course of each semester, individuals who rated themselves high on “planfulness” items such as “developing a clear plan when I have a goal is important to me” went to the gym more throughout both semesters compared to those who ranked themselves lower on “planfulness”.

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“Planfulness” was only significantly associated with the frequency of participants’ gym attendance during the winter semester, possibly due to participants completing their physical activity plan later in the year, the researchers noted.

While there was a small, but significant relationship between participant planfulness and the level of detail in their physical activity plans, descriptiveness was unexpectedly found to have no relationship with gym attendance, Ludwig and colleagues noted.

“It seems logical that people who are successful with their goals would be able to write in detail about their planning process,” said Ludwig.

“We were surprised, then, to find no relationship between people’s goal pursuit behavior and how they wrote about their goals.” (IANS)

Next Story

Study reveals, Frequent Drinking Can Be More Harmful Than Binges

For the study, published in the journal EP Europace, researchers examined the relative importance of frequent drinking versus binge drinking for new-onset atrial fibrillation

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Drinking
Researchers examined the relative importance of Frequent Drinking versus Binge Drinking for new-onset atrial fibrillation. Pixabay

Alcohol lovers, take a note. Drinking small amounts of alcohol frequently is linked with a higher likelihood of atrial fibrillation than binge drinking, says a new study.

Atrial fibrillation is the most common heart rhythm disorder and raises the risk of stroke by five-fold. Symptoms include palpitations, racing or irregular pulse, shortness of breath, tiredness, chest pain and dizziness.

“Our study suggests that drinking less often may also be important to protect against atrial fibrillation,” said study author Jong-Il Choi, from Korea University College in South Korea.

For the study, published in the journal EP Europace, researchers examined the relative importance of frequent drinking versus binge drinking for new-onset atrial fibrillation.

The analysis included 9,776,956 individuals without atrial fibrillation who underwent a national health check-up in 2009 which included a questionnaire about alcohol consumption.

Drinking
The number of Frequent Drinking sessions is related to atrial fibrillation onset regardless of age and sex. Pixabay

Participants were followed-up until 2017 for the occurrence of atrial fibrillation.

The number of drinking sessions per week was the strongest risk factor for new-onset atrial fibrillation.

Compared with drinking twice per week (reference group), drinking every day was the riskiest, with a hazard ratio (HR) of 1.412, while drinking once a week was the least risky (HR 0.933).

Binge drinking did not show any clear link with new-onset atrial fibrillation.

“Our study suggests that frequent drinking is more dangerous than infrequent binge drinking with regard to atrial fibrillation,” Choi said.

The number of drinking sessions was related to atrial fibrillation onset regardless of age and sex.

Repeated episodes of atrial fibrillation triggered by alcohol may lead to overt disease, the research notes.

Drinking
Drinking small amounts of alcohol frequently is linked with a higher likelihood of atrial fibrillation than binge drinking. Pixabay

In addition, drinking can provoke sleep disturbance which is a known risk factor for atrial fibrillation.

There was a two per cent increase in the risk of new-onset atrial fibrillation for each gram of alcohol consumed per week.

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Compared to mild drinkers, those who drank no alcohol, moderate, or high amounts had 8.6 per cent, 7.7 per cent, and 21.5 per cent elevated risks, respectively, the study said. (IANS)