25 Tips to Stay Healthy as a Software Developerhttps://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/?s=96&d=mm&r=g
25 Tips to Stay Healthy as a Software Developer
The desk and gadget-fixated life of a developer can easily lead to health conditions. It is interesting that most software builders seem ever concerned with the state of their technology more than their wellbeing. It is a sad case of misplaced priorities since the foremost resource any tech guru possesses is himself/herself. Below are 25 actionable tips that every developer can practice to stay healthy.
Create a schedule
As you may already know, software development is engaging to a fault, and you can inadvertently morph into a workaholic if you do not take necessary precautions. Have a schedule that details work hours, play hours, sleep hours, etc.
Do not overwork yourself
In case of a huge workload and approaching deadlines, seek help rather than try to do it all yourself. Moreover, develop a plan to tackle the task in bits. Otherwise, you may end up fatigued and unable to work.
Do not sit for more than two straight hours
Every hour or hour and a half, get out of your workstation and stretch and walk a bit to get the blood moving. You could go to the bathroom, watch the scenery outside your window, etc.
Take a break every 40 minutes
Every 40 or 50 minutes, take a 5-minute break. It will help you keep going for longer without your mental output and concentration taking a hit.
Work days and sleep nights
The body has an internal clock, and you would be well advised to tailor your schedule accordingly. Work days and sleep nights to maintain a healthy body.
Have water at your workstation
Have a bottle of water nearby as you work so that you can sip often. Make sure you take at least three liters of water in a day.
Minimize screen brightness
Show more concern and love for your eyes and reduce screen brightness and contrast to the bare minimum that will not adversely affect legibility.
Work in a well-lit room
To avoid stressing your eyes, make sure that your workstation is well lit. Take advantage of a study lamp if necessary.
Invest in an ergonomic chair
Comfort and the longevity of work shifts are directly related. Thus, invest in a good comfortable chair with sturdy back support. In the same wavelength, do not slouch or arch forward when working – sit upright.
Other workstation rules to follow
Besides a comfortable chair, ensure that both your feet are planted flat on the ground when you work. Your elbow angle when typing should be 90 degrees.
Exercise at least three times a week
At the very least, you should exercise thrice a week. For optimal results, work out four to five times a week. You can exercise on Monday and Tuesday, skip Wednesday, work out on Thursday and Friday and rest on weekends.
Stretch daily for five minutes or so to keep your muscles in optimum condition. Try and stretch all muscle groups.
Get 7 hours of sleep
At the very least, clock in 7 hours of sleep per night. Do not go past 8 hours to avoid becoming jaded.
Eat a balanced diet
Eat three square meals a day rich in protein, vegetables, with a small portion of carbohydrates and fats. To avoid overeating, stop eating the moment you feel you are almost full.
Do not snack before sleeping
Eating 2-3 hours before you sleep is a bad idea – eat dinner early. Espouse the cliché healthy eating mantra of eating breakfast like a king, lunch like prince and dinner like a pauper.
Avoid junk foods
Avoid sugary and over processed foods and strike soda off your menu as a viable thirst quencher. If you feel like snacking, snack on nuts, fruit, sweet potato, etc.
Drink water first thing in the morning
Immediately you wake up, take a glass or two of water in the morning. It may not feel good initially, but you will get used to it.
Eat a fruit or two daily
Include a healthy serving of fruit in your diet. Bananas, apples, pears, avocado, pawpaw, etc. Vary the selection to get the whole range or nutrients.
Meditation has many benefits, but chief among them is that it helps in stress management. Take 20 minutes daily to sit down comfortably and count 50 deep breaths.
Take up a hobby
Take up a fun hobby; preferably, a physical one – video games do not count. Games such as ping pong, squash, billiards, and badminton are easy to master.
Get out there and socialize: hang out with friends, go to the club, host a party, etc.
No devices in bed
Leave all your devices at your working table before you sleep. Adhere to a strict no electronic devices in bed policy.
Do not multitask when eating
Focus on eating as you would on a development task. Feel the flavor, chew properly and eat slowly. This way, you will be more unlikely to overeat, and you will enjoy your food.
The reasons to quit smoking are so numerous that stating them would necessitate another article altogether. Quit already and go slow on the drinking.
Never ignore disease symptoms
If you feel unwell, do not self-medicate, seek professional help. Most life-threatening diseases are mitigable at the onset, but most people ignore the symptoms.
Fame, achievement, recognition, and money mean nothing if you are not healthy enough to enjoy them. Give due attention to your body and treat it as a cherished ally because it is your most prized asset.