Right now you are probably sitting down reading this blog post. How long have you been sitting there? If it has been over 30 minutes since you last moved around, then get ready to get up and begin a healthier new habit.
Today’s guest post includes three easy ways to counteract the frightening and unhealthy side effects that stem from sitting at your desk all day. Sitting down and slumped over a screen has become an important lifestyle risk factor linked to cancer, heart disease and diabetes and it is estimated that around 9% of premature deaths have been linked to sitting all day. That’s about five million people a year. Want to learn more about why you need to get up and move? Watch this TedEx original here.
I asked Alex Guillien, the Head Strength & Conditioning Coach/Instructor at Dakota State University for his best exercises to help us get up and move throughout the day. Alex aims to inspire and empower others to become the best versions of themselves, beginning with physical training.
“Sitting has been dubbed the new smoking,” explains Alex. “I am grateful for the work I do as a Strength & Conditioning Coach because one of the uncommonly thought of benefits is I am on my feet most of the day. Some may see this as a negative but it allows me to have limited time sitting down; which you fill learn has dire consequences.”
Below are a few passages from the Science Daily article titled, Sitting for long periods increases risk of disease and early death, regardless of exercise.
“The amount of time a person sits during the day is associated with a higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and death, regardless of regular exercise, according to a review study published today in the Annals of Internal Medicine.”
More than one half of an average person’s day is spent being sedentary — sitting, watching television, or working at a computer”
“Our study finds that despite the health-enhancing benefits of physical activity, this alone may not be enough to reduce the risk for disease.” (science daily)
So are we all going to die!? Yes, we are. But it doesn’t have to be because of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Or at LEAST, we can reduce our risk of these things by limiting our sitting times.
Your New 2 Minute Healthy Habit
Get up every 30 minutes for 2-3 minutes. This will get the blood flowing to the vital organs and reduce those times when you may sit for 2-3 hours at at time. It will also improve creativity as motion will bring blood to the brain. You should be getting up to pee anyway. If not, you’re not drinking enough water.
2. Wake up the Booty
Sitting too long will cause glute amnesia, aka your butt turns off (going numb). Sounds bad. It is. Nearly 80% of people will have low back pain in their life. It sucks. So get your glutes aka da booty functioning by squeezing them for a set of 30 seconds every time you get up out of your chair. You may look like the weirdo in the office but your butt and back will thank you.
3. Improve Your Posture
Bonus: Grab a EliteFTS Pro Resistance Band so you can improve your posture by doing pull-aparts. Watch the video here for a band pull apart super series. Work up to 100 total each day for improved posture, a stronger upper back, and enhanced shoulder health.
I (MJ) also like to add chair squats to the mix –
“The sedentary life…is the real sin against the holy spirit.”
Have you adopted any healthy work habits? If you have any tips/advice or additional ways to move through the work day, please share in the comments below.