Does sitting long hours really have an effect on your health? It sure does … even after a brisk morning workout.
The American College of Sports Medicine reports that we are about 30 percent less active overall on days when they exercise compared to days we don’t.
Maybe we move less because we think we’ve worked out enough for one day. Or maybe we just wore ourselves out.
Either way, it’s time to rethink our plan.
Because most people simply aren’t running or walking or even standing enough to counteract all the harm that can result from sitting 8 or 9 hours a day.
We are a bunch of “active couch potatoes!”
The American Journal of Epidemiology reports that a man who sits more than 6 hours a day has an 18 percent increased risk of dying from heart disease and a 7.8 percent increased chance of dying from diabetes compared with someone who sits for just 3 hours or less a day.
When you sit for more than an hour at a time, your body metabolizes less blood sugar, produces more fat and slows circulation in your legs.
Are you scared out of your swivel chair yet? Good! The fix is easy!
- Stand up at least one time per hour and move around for 1-2 minutes (fill your water bottle, text your co-worker good morning, make a trip to the restroom).
- Plan your activity throughout the day — go up and down the stairs , do a few lunges and calf raises, do a few stretches while your lunch is in the microwave.
- Be active during phone meetings. Pace! Take notes on the kitchen counter.
- Get the gear. Purchase a standing desk, sit on a stability ball, and use hands-free devices to help keep you mobile.
Hiking and going outdoors are great ways to improve your fitness. Check out this collection of QC-area parks for some great ideas!