Recently I’ve come across a few articles on the negative effects sitting has on your body. Most notably, “Sitting is Killing You.” The graphic has some startling information we should all be aware of. We spend an average of 9.3 hours a day sitting. Since we’re supposed to be awake for 16 hours, this means that well over half our day is spent doing little or no physical effort. For many, not much of the other 7 hours are spent doing much physical activity, either.
When we sit, electrical activity in the legs shuts off; we burn only one calorie per minute, and enzymes that break down fat drop by 90 percent–just to name a few.
So what can you do to balance your day–or better yet–lifestyle? It really isn’t that surprising: GET MOVING!
If you have a desk job, when you take a bathroom break use the bathroom a floor or two away–and take the stairs. Take a walk at lunch and try not to work through lunch. Stretching or standing while at your desk, and standing while on the phone get your blood flowing, too. These are just a few ideas, and if you (stand up) and think about it, you’ll easily come up with more!
Don’t forget about getting active after work as well. If you take public transit to work, get off a few stops early and walk the last 30 minutes home. You can also join a club for almost any activity, but do something you enjoy and do it at least three or four times a week. Again, the ideas are endless. All you have to do is be creative and commit to your favorite activities on a regular basis.
So now that you have some ideas on how to get active after sitting so much, what are you doing to sit in a healthy, relaxed way? Scheduling and committing to at least one massage a month can keep you sitting without your excess physical stress weighing you down even further.
Massage combats the negative side effects of shutting off leg muscle electricity, stimulate gut enzymes and help you recover from your new activity regime.
Be sure your therapist does a thorough job of flushing your legs, meaning a massage minimum of 20 minutes. The most well-known benefit of massage is, of course, relaxation–but relaxing is no joke. It sets off numerous health benefits. In our high-stress world, your gut doesn’t function properly, and a relaxing massage starts up your gut to digest food better. The telling sign this is happening is your stomach gurgles towards the end of the massage. This isn’t your stomach telling you your hungry, it’s firing up again and doing what it’s suppose to do.
In many circles the gut is known as the second brain. Your second brain contains about 100 million neurons, more than either the spinal cord or peripheral nervous system. Your second brain sends signals to your head, like butterflies, for example. Many studies connectboth brains to mental health and some diseases.
So at the end of the day, get off your butt because it’s killing you! And schedule a massage while you’re at it. Don’t be afraid of new adventures, be afraid of not trying new ones.