Thursday, June 22, 2017

BIC and BOC ~By Suzy Leopold

Perhaps you are seated as you read today’s GROG Blog post. 

Writers know the importance of, BIC or Butt in Chair. 

When you have your BIC, you are brainstorming, revising, and polishing. 

BIC = writing. 

Some days, writers are seated with BIC reading a stack of mentor texts or researching facts and information for a nonfiction manuscript. 

A tall stack of mentor texts
Are you sitting at this very moment? I'm thinking you must be.

If you are, please consider removing your BIC now. Come on you can stand up to read this GROG Blog post.

While my intentions are not to take you away from your computer keyboard or pen and paper, you need to get your BOC or Butt off chair to be a better writer. If you choose to stay seated then at least SUS or Sit up straight

BOC and SUS will support you and your writing.

I’m certain you may be thinking, “How can this be?”

As a writer, more vertical time throughout the day is best for your writing and your overall health, including your heart.

According to the American Heart Association, sedentary behavior can be risky causing cardiovascular problems. Yes, the life of a writer is sedentary. It’s what writers do to increase word counts on manuscripts, and meet deadlines.

When a writer is sedentary for long periods of time, one develops a foggy brain. Your brain function slows down. 

Walking helps your muscles pump fresh blood and oxygen through the brain and increases the mood-enhancing chemicals. Spending time in green spaces, such as a stroll through a park, a hike up a hill, or enjoying the sights, sounds, and fragrances of a garden will rejuvenate your spirit. 

After a walk, a writer’s memory works better, improves attention, and has a positive impact on creativity.

All you need is a good pair of walking shoes. Grab a water bottle and slather on sunscreen. Now put one foot in front of the other. Remember to replace walking shoes every 500 miles.

Whatever you do, try to walk more. Along with health benefits, its one of the best things you can do for your writing. 

When you sit and write, do you experience some neck pain? How about your back and shoulders—Do they bother you as you write? Craning your neck forward toward a keyboard or tilting your head to write can cause strain on the cervical vertebrae. 

As my Mom (and your Mom, too) always said, “Sit up straight.” Relax your shoulders with your arms close to your sides. Elbows should be bent ninety degrees. Do not lean forward with your head and keep your feet flat on the floor. When you have your BIC, remember to SUS.
SUS
Sit up Straight
Consider standing as you type at your computer. If you have a cool standing desk that you type at, you're doing great. Typing while standing may give you an energy boost. An important tip to remember while standing is to keep your hands near waist level. It is also best to have the computer screen adjusted to eye level.
Stand and type
Walk more. Enjoy walking. When you do, you’re enhancing your creative muscles to write more and write better. You’re also creating a healthy life style with a stronger heart, and a clearer mind.

A writer needs to incorporate more movement every day. Whatever you do, take more breaks every thirty minutes from your writing to walk, to stretch, or stand up. Along with health benefits, its one of the best things you can do for you and your writing. 

After your walk, get your BIC. Make sure you are SUSBeing vertical is best. You can do it.

25 comments:

  1. LOVE everything about this nourishing article, Suzy.

    My writing world ramped up when I pushed away from too too too much seated time & went out into the nearby & far off world! It's healthier for mind & muscle.

    Joyful walking, jumping, jogging, climbing, browsing, strolling, swimming, running, kayaking, floating, standing summer to everyone at Group Blog, reader or writer.

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    1. Jan, I am pleased your mind and muscles are healthier as you continue to explore near and far. May your activity give you many writing ideas.

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  2. TY, Suzy. I was doing to much BOC yesterday, and I felt it until I went out to hear some jazz and danced!

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    1. Finding the balance is so important, as you know, Kathy. May you find some story ideas dancing to jazz music.

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  3. Great reminders Suzy...moderation in all things is the motto...even for us writers!

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    1. For sure, Darlene. Moderation is key to experiencing greater fulfillment and pleasure in life.

      ~Suzy

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  4. A post that made me smile, stand up, and move around! Through all the humor spotlighting a posture that happens all too often for way too long--BIC--your health tips are sobering and eye-opening. Thanks for making us stand up and take notice!

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    1. And your comment makes me smile, Anne. Let's all stand together and take a brain break.

      ~Suzy

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  5. I love to take walk breaks. Super reminders for us, Suzy.

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    1. May the walks that you take through your neighborhood refresh your mind and muscles, Patty.

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  6. Thank you for this great reminder. It's especially important for me now, as the temperatures where I live are reaching 117+ and going outside is challenging.

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    1. Oh my, David. Experiencing triple-digit temperatures is more than a heat wave. I'm sure you know the best precautions to take: stay hydrated, use sunscreen, and limit yourself to being outdoors during the hottest part of the day. Perhaps you can do some indoor exercise.

      All the best.
      ~Suzy

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  7. Such great advice. My husband and I have taken to walking the Rails to Trails Greenway in nearby North Augusta. It's been a great experience. I totally agree with you about moving around. And it is my former yoga teacher's birthday today and I am reminded to sit up straight and put those shoulders in your back pocket! Love your photos.

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    1. Perry & I will think of you and Mr. Rivers out and about on the walking trails. We'll be on our bicycles riding the Rails to Trails in Illinois.

      I love your yoga teacher's words: Put those shoulders in your back pocket."

      I'm pleased you like the photos.

      Let's keep writing. Let's keep moving.

      ~Suzy

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  8. A great reminder to take breaks & let the ideas settle while walking the dogs. Thanks!

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    1. Having a walking partner or taking a dog for a walk is the best.

      Thank you, Patricia.

      ~Suzy

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  9. Great reminder, Suzy! I am guilty of getting carried away with my writing, reading, and research. I bought a stepper and use that to get my heart rate going. I need to remind myself to move throughout the day. Thank you, Suzy :)

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    1. I can certainly understand being involved with reading, writing, and research. Doing something that I enjoy can easily make me lose track of time.

      Keep on stepping, Charlotte.

      ~Suzy

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  10. Thanks for the reminder. I also have a furry reminder who lets me know it's time to take a walk. She can be relentless. A good thing, too, otherwise I'd be sitting wayyy too long.

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    1. Such a good dog, Jilanne. Who needs to set a timer for a reminder when you have a sweet dog reminding you to go for a walk? Perhaps your furry friend enjoys listeing to you read your manuscripts aloud.

      ~Suzy

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  11. Thanks for this post, Sue! At Pat Miller's NF4NF conference, (that set that tribe's presence strongly in Facebook) we did a couple of BOC kind of breaks between our sessions, keeping in sync with my pb ms on how many ways kids can read a book. My husband and son are taking pictures of me as I am in them, which I post from time to time to tickle other fellow writers to copy. Right now, as I write this post, I'm doing a samakonasana or right-angle pose over the desk. LOL -- it's a super good stretch for the back! Erin has termed it the "Yoga at writing". In fact, we can stretch it to a Yoga at writing nonstop -- which makes for a YAWN! An oxymoron with a positive twist.

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    1. You are appreciated, Balaka. I can just see you in a samakonasana pose!

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on the benefits of yoga. I'm certain your stretching through Yoga at Writing and Yoga at Writing Nonstop [YAWN] have proven to be favorable for writers.

      ~Sue

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  12. Suzy, thanks for sharing. Even though Balaka has been sharing her YAWN tricks, I always forget to move when I'm set on writing.

    I feel like the Ma from The Night Before Christmas, "settled in for a long winter's nap" because that's how I hunker down at the computer.

    I will be practicing more BOC, SUS AND YAWN this week, and I'll report on it. Thanks for the reminder!

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  13. You're so funny, Erin. Now I have an image of you as Ma all settled in as you write!

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and comments.

    ~Suzy ska Sue

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  14. Good info to know! Thanks, Suzy!

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