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November 4, 2015

It’s a beautiful day in West Michigan and I am taking the time to get some work done around the house and in the garage. I decided to take the opportunity while working to monitor my breathing using the MyBreath app from Breath Research. It’s a startup company that is working with academic and medical researchers to find ways to monitor breathing using the sound capture from the iPhone microphone on the earbuds (https://www.breathresearch.com/).

I am a bit of a healthcare and technology geek as those that know me well can attest to. I am a follower of the quantified self movement. But not to create a data-driven life, but rather to instill within myself a sense of mindfulness.

I sing in choir, so I know how I should breath while singing, but this app had me thinking about the kind of breathing I was doing with simple activity and it was interesting to watch how my breathing changed through the course of my afternoon. As I became mindful of my breathing, I realized how there was a link between my conscious thoughts, physical labor and my body’s adaptation through breathing.

I am not advocating moving autonomic functions into the level of conscious thought, but I could see how this could apply nicely to an asthmatic patient, COPD sufferer, or a person with chronic emphysema. That ability to understand the linkage in normal activity to the stress factors that might cause a flare-up would be useful.

I will try this again when I workout. Just to see how I can optimize my breathing to my physical exertion.

And oh yeah, when I thought a spider was crawling up my leg. That made a difference too…

Originally posted on LinkedIn.

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