Sitting Too Much? Tips to Get Moving
Apr 9, 2021
Wanna hear some crazy numbers? You might want to sit down for this. (But just for a minute or two.)
According to the CDC:
- Approximately 1 in 4 Americans sit for more than 8 hours a day.
- More 40 percent of these individuals say they do not take part in regular, daily exercise.
- Conversely, less than 4 percent spend less than 4 hours a day sitting and partake in routine physical activity.
So, what does that mean for you?
Well, for starters, a sedentary lifestyle is a huge contributing factor for diabetes, a dangerous and chronic condition that causes too much sugar to circulate in the bloodstream, and ultimately results in myriad health complications. One out of three people is at risk for developing Type 2 diabetes. Even more shocking? Nine out of 10 people who have prediabetes – and could do something to prevent or delay the disease’s onset – have absolutely no idea.
But sitting too much isn’t only linked to an increased risk of diabetes. This pervasive habit has been shown to play a role in the development of cardiovascular disease, cancer, depression, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and more. This “sitting disease,” as it is frequently called, has also been shown to reduce a person’s life expectancy by at least two years!
Slipping into a sedentary lifestyle is often not a conscious choice, either. While binge-watching the latest streaming phenomenon certainly plays its part, in an abundance of cases, our day jobs and responsibilities keep us bound to our chairs. And the recent pandemic has only made getting up and out more challenging.
And while routine exercise can not completely offset the potential damages of a sedentary lifestyle, taking 1-2 minute “standing” breaks throughout the day is critical to cutting down the detrimental effects of sitting. And 30 minutes of moderate activity at least five days a week continues to be a winning formula for a healthier mind and body.
Here are some additional tips to get moving when you find yourself sitting too much.
- Making a phone call? Pace yourself. Literally. Take your cell phone for a walk, and pace around the house while you chat with your coworker, your best pal, your parents, or whatever.
- Park at the other end of the lot. How often do you find yourself aimlessly circling the packed parking lot of that big box retailer looking for signs of someone backing out? Instead of indulging in this time waster, park at the no-man’s-land far end of the lot and reap the benefits of a nice, brisk walk.
- Dance like no one’s watching. Or everyone. Or just the cat. Doesn’t matter, really. If you’re still working from home, and are not currently engaged in a Zoom meeting, let your body feel the music. There’s nothing in that employee manual that says you can’t use that coffee break to do The Charleston, instead. (Better check, though, just in case.)
- Use a standing desk. Or a stack of books. Or that tower of boxes that haven’t made it to the recycling bin yet. Bottom line? Get your bottom out of the chair for a while and work standing up.
- Thirsty? Parched? Every hour, take a trip to the kitchen to refill your water bottle or brew another cup of coffee.
- Take a trip to the fitness studio. One-on-one personal training can keep you moving and motivated. Personalized work outs will address your unique physical profile, medical history, and personal goals, and skilled trainers meet you where you are – just as long as it’s not in a chair.
The certified personal trainers at Fitness Together Ellicott Training have plenty of stellar tips to get moving if excessive sitting is a problem area for you. Our team specializes in creating an environment where your body can move, strengthen, and thrive, and our customized workout regimens are designed to fit your needs, hold you accountable, and achieve your goals. Call us today at 410-750-2228 to find out more and to schedule your first session.