Get On Ya Feet
Wanna know something scary? Don't worry, I never list a problem without providing a solution.
SITTING IS KILLING US.
Whether you're deep in a Netflix binge or chained to a desk at work, the result is the same: bad news. Sedentary lifestyles are no bueno, and we're sucked into them for a number of reasons:
- Technology makes our lives increasingly more convenient
- Social media hooks us (HELLO mindless scrolling)
- Jobs limit us to one spot for long periods of time (this includes commuting)
I used to think I was in the clear because I consistently worked out and prioritized fitness. PSYYYYYCHE. Turns out, research shows no matter how hard you kill it in the gym, no amount of time or intensity can offset the effects of you being sedentary for 5+ hours. Get this: Sitting for over five hours is the health equivalent to smoking a pack of cigs a day. YIKES.
However, there is a remedy: standing up every 10 minutes. Ideally, you get the heart pumping a little while you're at it, by doing squats/lunges/jumping jacks/etc, but at the very least, get off your booty.
Set a timer on your phone to remind you to stand up every ten minutes. Pretty soon, your body will prompt you naturally. For a few years now, I've been standing up every ten minutes, and like clockwork, my body will start screaming at me to stand up on that tenth minute. It's incredible. I personally do squat/lunge variations for a few seconds when I stand.
Still not convinced? Get a load of the following:
- Sitting for long periods of time can cause changes in your muscles. You stop breaking up fat in your bloodstream and start accumulating fat. You get sleepy and gain weight. [New York Times Phys Ed columnist Gretchen Reynolds in her book The First 20 Minutes in an NPR article, inked below].
- When you stand, your heart beats ten times more per minute than when you sit. In a year, this adds up to more than 30,000 calories burned, which equates to running ten marathons [Ragan.com article, linked below]
- Taking walking or water breaks throughout the day can increase productivity by 60 percent!
So LET'S STAND TOGETHER.