The dangers of sitting too much
Sitting for more than eight hours a day can increase your risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, back pain and more.
You like to run in the morning, spin at your gym at night. You have the fitness component of good health covered, right? Not necessarily. New studies confirm that sitting for eight or more hours a day can increase your risk of obesity, heart disease, posture issues, diabetes, muscle weakness, back pain and more. This is true even if you get regular exercise, although your risk is certainly minimized if you are active 30 to 60 minutes a day.
What can you do if your job or lifestyle keeps you in front of a computer or TV screen for hours a day? In addition to regular sustained exercise, take mini breaks during every hour of sitting. Just standing for a minute or two can help reduce the negative effect of sitting.
- Get out of your chair
- March in place for 60 seconds.
- Stand up when talking on the phone.
- Walk to someone's desk to deliver a message instead of sending an email.
- Set your computer to alert you once an hour to take a "standing"mini break.
- Stand up to visit the file cabinet instead of rolling over to it in your chair.
- Take a walk on your lunch break.
- Stretch in place
- Stretch your arms, neck, legs and torso while sitting. This is good for both your circulation and muscles.
- Have a ball
- Sit on a stability ball instead of a chair; you will burn calories as you stabilize your body's core.
- Keep an elastic band handy to do stretches.
- Have some light free weights on hand.