Sitting Kills

Young-Woman-WorkingMany of our daily activities involve sitting: driving, working, eating, relaxing – the list goes on. It might not seem like a big deal, but recent studies have brought attention to the fact that sitting could be very dangerous to our health. In fact, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), physical inactivity is the fourth leading risk factor for death across the globe. Now that we know that sedentary behavior increases our chances for cardiovascular diseases, cancer and Type 2 diabetes, how can we decrease the amount of time we spend sitting in a day? An easy place to start is at work!

The following tricks can help you lead a more active lifestyle in spite of your desk job:

Take the Stairs – Whenever you have the chance to use the stairs instead of the elevator, do it! If the elevators are usually crowded in the beginning and end of the day, you’ll save time.

Make the Rounds – Do you tend to send emails to the person a couple cubicles over instead of going to their desk? Now is the perfect time to change that habit by visiting your coworkers.

Standing Meetings – Depending on their purpose, staff meetings can take hours – that’s a long time to be sitting without a break! Since you’ll be back sitting at your desk after, stand during meetings.

Keep Tight – As you work, tighten your abdominal muscles and hold the position as you complete a task. You’re not going to get an instant six-pack, but you’ll build up your core strength.

Wall Sit – If you have a long report to read, multi-task by doing a wall sit as you review it. Hold the pose for as long as you can and slowly work up to longer sessions day by day.

Leg Raises – While working at your desk, do mini leg raises under your desk! Hover your leg slightly above the seat of the chair, not letting it rest until you’re through all of your repetitions.

Tricep Dips – Need a quick break from staring at your computer screen? Stand up and turn around, placing the palms of your hands on the desk behind you. Lower your body, lift back up and repeat.

Wall Push-Ups – If you need a break after a long morning swamped with work, do push-ups against the wall. They are less involved than getting on the floor of the office, but have the same effect.

Chair Squats – This exercise can be done while you work! Push your chair out slightly behind yourself and squat until you barely graze the seat, then lift back up and repeat.

Chair Swivels – The perfect combination for your abdominal tightening exercises, a controlled swing from side to side while sitting in your desk chair with work your oblique muscles.

There is always time to be active, no matter how busy we may be! If you want to fully commit to an exercise regimen, explore your options with North Haven Health & Racquet.