You should exercise more.
The American Heart Association’s recommendation for healthy adults is approximately 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day, 5 times a week. But let’s think about what the majority of people are doing the other 24 hours of the day.
Morning- Getting ready for work. Sitting for breakfast. Sitting in the car on the commute.
Afternoon – Sitting at work. Sitting at lunch. Sitting on the commute home.
Evening – Making dinner. Sitting down for dinner. Sitting to read, watch television, or peruse the internet for multiple hours.
Night – Sleep–If you are a normal person, there is very little movement going on during this time.
Even with 30 minutes of exercise in there, there are still over 12 hours of sitting and minimal activity (plus sleep) when all is said and done! Only 4-5 percent of the day is spent in moderate physical activity, which is a shame. With the advent of technology, our lifestyles have become increasingly more sedentary. The sad truth is the average adult spends 50-70 percent of their day sitting.
Even if you strive to fit in the recommended 30 minutes of walking, running, or even high-intensity CrossFit each day, you still fall way short of considering yourself a healthy, physically active person if you follow anything like the schedule dictated above. Believe it or not, a chronic sedentary lifestyle actually reduces your life span. Recent research has shown that sedentary lifestyles are more at risk for disease, especially diabetes and obesity. Our bodies are simply not designed to be sitting for most of their lives. They need to move, contract and extend; our hearts need to pump, our blood needs to flow. Not only will you be healthier and live longer, but you will have a greater quality of life.
Do yourself a favor and get moving! Here are 5 ways you can become more physically active…
Take up a team sport. Team sports require commitment to teammates and many practices that will ensure that you keep your body moving. Try joining a local tennis club, an adult hockey league, or start an impromptu sports group with your friends one night and see where it goes.
Stand up as often as you can. While at work, stand up while you’re on the phone, walk to the furthest cafe on lunch break, or try sitting on an exercise ball to keep your core engaged.
Bike to work. This may not be possible for everyone, but if you have a bike-worthy commute to the office, try it out! Yes, you are technically sitting, but your body is actively engaged and pushing while biking. It is certainly more exercise than sitting in a stinky car.
Hire a trainer. Having a schedule can really get you in the habit of working out, especially when you are not in the mood. Hiring a personal trainer could inspire your cravings for movement and fitness.
Drastically cut TV/internet time. Replace it with a relaxing evening yoga sesh. Or, if you absolutely must, work out on the floor while watching your favorite shows. Some great ideas are planks, pilates 100′s, and gentle stretches. Watch “Jeopardy!” and give your brain a workout as well!
We have only one life and one body. Respect it, make the most of it, and keep it moving.