SITTING IS A SERIOUS HEALTH RISK!
The highest mortality rate is found in men and women who spend most of their day sitting. Sitting for too long blocks blood flow, increases blood pressure, and impairs the process that clears fat and sugar from your blood stream and stores it as fat. Sitting can cause a significant decrease in overall metabolism and energy as well! Not only does sitting cause bad things to happen in your body, it also affects the body’s ability to remove plaque. Just think of how often this is going on inside your body if you: drive to work, sit down to eat, sit at work, sit in meetings, watch TV, use the computer, play video games, read, play cards, and have other sedentary hobbies! Did you know that exercising a few times a week after work or school WILL NOT reverse this process? It’s no wonder why we are all tired, sick, and stressed out at the end of our work days.
So what CAN you do to stay healthy and energized?
Mitochondria: Your energizer factory!
Mitochondria are little organisms living inside your cells that are “batteries” or your “fountain of energy”. When your body is in motion, they can burn up to 400 times the amount of energy (calories) than if you had been sitting! If you were to do moderate aerobic exercise consistently for 12 weeks the number of mitochondria in your cells would increase dramatically. By moving throughout the day you keep the mitochondria active helping produce energy.
Prevent and reverse cancer or diseases caused by sitting too much:
NEAT: Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis: Anything you do during daily life that is not planned exercise or sleep. NEAT can vary by 2,000 calories from person to person and can burn 300-400 extra calories if you get up and move more. If you cut your calorie intake from food by 300 and moved more to burn an extra 300 calories on top of that; you would lose over 1lb/week without stepping foot into a gym. Weight loss isn’t the only benefit to moving more; it can increase your blood flow and oxygen uptake (good for delivering nutrients to your tissue), lower your blood pressure, produce more energy throughout the day, and help keep you younger on a cellular level… your body will grow stronger and produce energy at any age, but you have to keep it moving so that it can!
An “ideal” day of movement; just for ideas:
– Get up and stretch for 5 minutes before brushing your teeth.
– While brushing your teeth balance on one leg, switch legs half way through.
– While waiting for your morning coffee to brew or your breakfast to cook drop down and do push-ups.
– At every stoplight on your way to work sit up straight and tighten your core, hold it tight until the light turns.
– Park far away from the door when you arrive at work and always take the stairs.
– When you get to your desk do a set of squats over your chair.
– Every hour get up from your desk and exercise for minute, stretch, do push-ups, run stairs, jog in place, just move!
– Take a walk on your lunch break or plan a group walk during meetings.
– Ride a bike to do errands.
– Spend time catching up with friends over a walk instead of sitting down to eat.
– If you talk on the phone walk around instead of sit.
– During commercial breaks do a few exercises: crunches, push-ups, resistance band curls, or jumping jacks.
– If you play video games do the same thing when you hit a new level.
– If you have kids take them for a walk after dinner or go to the park.
– Make a family “cardio train” and have them follow you around the house before bed or show them a few stretches that they can do with you.
I am a big fan of push-ups because it will strengthen your core and stabilize your shoulders. If you can’t do full push-ups yet don’t drop down on your knees; it is hard to get good form that way. Instead use a chair, counter, or stairs at home to elevate your upper body and make it easier on your arms. As you get stronger drop to a l0wer elevation until you reach the floor.
These are just some ideas. Print a free “GET UP & MOVE!” poster on my website for more tips and tricks to living healthy and active!http://www.kristiworful.com/#!get-up-&-move!
Kristi Worful, NASM Certified Personal Trainer www.KristiWorful.com