Author: Liz Frome
We spend too much time sitting each day!
How much time do you spend sitting each day? New challenge get up and move!
If you're like most people, more than half of your waking hours are spent sitting down. Even if you dedicate at least 30 minutes a day to structured exercise (such as walking, cycling, or swimming), it's still important to get up and move for at least a few minutes, many times throughout the day. (Do you or can you get a standing desk and if yes make sure you use it!)
"The more you sit, the more your large muscles are not using glucose, the body's main energy source. Uninterrupted sitting can cause blood sugar levels to rise, triggering the release of insulin, the hormone that regulates blood sugar," says Dr. Hicham Skali, a cardiologist with Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women's Hospital. Over time, sedentary habits cause the body to become less sensitive to insulin. The resulting insulin resistance promotes inflammation, a key player in the buildup of fatty plaque inside arteries, he explains. (They are thinking that this is why a variety of ages are currently being diagnosed prediabetic.) Get up and move – by doing this you can protect yourself from the damage of chronic inflammation. Just by moving more.
Don't just sit there – Get up and move.
The evidence about the harms of uninterrupted sitting (and the benefits of breaking it up) has been piling up for years, aided by tools such as fitness trackers that reveal people's typical activity patterns.
Here is an example from a study:
In more than 5,600 women followed for five years, reducing sedentary time by one hour per day was linked to a 26% lower risk of heart disease. Again, the hour of non-sedentary time didn't have to occur all at once. Short, light-intensity interruptions to sitting were just as effective.
Making the moves
There are many ways you can add short bursts of movement to your daily routine. Whenever you notice you've been sitting for a while, do a short set of exercises — say five to 10 squats or leg lifts. You can also keep a stretchy exercise band near your favorite chair to get some arm exercises in as well. (At The Job Shop we have created a stretching area and have made it convenient for everyone. We just need to make sure to take advantage and get up out of our chairs. We will do Peleton arm weights for 10 minutes as a group. We have been getting up and following @pouya_yoga a few minutes a day for stretching and movement. You can google many accounts online that may be motivating for you to Get up!)
Here are some other ideas:
Set a reminder. Many fitness trackers feature alerts that remind you to get up at least once an hour. But you can also use a smartphone or a regular kitchen timer; use it during periods when you tend to sit for long stretches.
Take care of your chores less efficiently. Put your groceries or other purchases in small bags and make multiple trips from your car to your home. Stand up while folding laundry, and put just a few items of clothing away at a time to get more steps in.
Pace during phone calls. Whenever you're on the phone, stand up. Try to walk back and forth or in circles while you talk.
Move a little while you watch TV. The average American watches close to five hours of television a day, and that amount increases as people age. At least once an hour, stand up and march in place, swing your arms, or do some easy stretches.
Take the long way. Whenever you drive somewhere, park in a spot farther from the door to get in some extra steps. Take the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator, even if you climb only one or two of the total flights.
Be the leader at work and rally the employees to get up and put together a movement challenge!
Once you start moving more; I feel you will continue to move and reap the health benefits.
Keep moving and if you are looking for a new job – keep looking!
“You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated. In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it."