Research has shown that even if you exercise in the morning, it is not a valid excuse for you to slip back into a sedentary lifestyle during the day. To define sedentary in the simplest way possible is to live a life without physical activity or a minimal one.
Sitting for prolonged periods or living a sedentary lifestyle can cause sitting disease. Also, it puts individuals at risk of osteoporosis, a health issue caused by aging that affects the bone.
Being more active doesn’t necessarily mean, spending more hours at the gym. It just means moving your body throughout the day and not being stagnant or at a point for too long. Engaging in physical activity will help to maintain and increase bone density, which in turn will help avoid osteoporosis.
Why Are Daily Movements So Important?
First and Foremost, it helps to eliminate the symptoms of sitting disease, which slowly allows an individual’s health to deteriorate. There are so many benefits of standing vs. sitting such as:
- Improved posture
- Better health
- Better metabolism, and many more.
Sitting for too long and then deciding to stand up, will not counter the damage that sitting too much has caused. So it is best for movements, exercise, and standing to be incorporated daily for the best result.
How much sitting is too much?
The ideal ratio for sitting vs. standing is 1:1 or 1:3. This can be deduced as sitting for 30 minutes and standing for 30 minutes or sitting for 30 minutes and standing for 90 minutes. It is easier to work in smaller sessions because standing too much also has some repercussions.
Incorporating More Movements Into Your Day
#1: Skip The Elevator, Take The Stairs!
Instead of taking the elevator in your apartment building or office building, develop the habit of taking the stairs. This way, you can incorporate more active movements into your day. While walking up the stairs, you can swing your arms and stretch your legs to loosen up your joints and feel better overall.
#2: Set An Alarm
This might seem silly or extra, but it works! Setting a movement alarm to remind you to stand up and move is another good way to incorporate movements into your day. If you’ve been used to living a sedentary lifestyle, reminding yourself to stand up and move might be difficult. The purpose of the alarm is to notify you of when to stand and sit.
#3: Switch to a Sit-to-Stand Desk
This might be the biggest and most impressive invention made towards incorporating movements into your day, as a big reason why people live sedentary lifestyles is that they work on 9-6 jobs. Working a desk job hardly gives you any room to move around except during lunch breaks, as you’re required to sit at your desk and work. That being said, incorporating a sit-to-stand desk is the best way to start moving. In fact, there is a huge variety of sit-to-desks and desk risers. This is designed to help incorporate movement into your work hours by walking while working. If you use a normal sit-to-stand desk, then you can also incorporate a fitness balance board, which helps mimic ankle movements that occur while you walk.
#4: Run Your Errands, Literally!
If you have errands to run or chores to take care of during the day, skip the car and walk or run to complete those errands. You might need to get groceries or coffee or visit the post office, but if all these locations are within walking distance or within your vicinity, then you can skip using the car and run instead or use a treadmill walkstation at home or in the office. This is a very good way to incorporate movements into your day.
#5: Exercise During Television Commercials
Another good way of incorporating movements into your day, and not being a couch potato, is to stand every time there’s a commercial. You can exercise, stretch, move your body, swing your arms, and more when your favorite television show is on a commercial break. This is a good way to get up and move, instead of just being a couch potato while you watch your show.
#6: Walk While On The Phone
Instead of sitting while talking on the phone, walking will help you move more. This way you’re multitasking, getting in more movements and answering your phone calls.
Instead of walking, another good way to incorporate exercises into your day is to use an under desk cycle. This works as an under-the-desk elliptical machine to get in that movement and workout, even while at work.
#7: Calf Raises Every Day Are The Way To Go
Calf raises are basically just lifting your heels up. It is a relatively easy movement to do and can be done anywhere, at any time. You can do calf raises every day while on the phone, or at your standing desk, or even while sitting by just lifting your legs up. This is also a very good way to incorporate movement at work and in your day in general.
#8: Drink Lots Of Water
As we all know, ingesting water during the day is very beneficial and important for us. It is recommended by NHS to drink at least 6 – 8 glasses or 1 – 2 liters of water a day. This is needed for optimum hydration and for our bodies to function appropriately. You’d be surprised to know that drinking more water will help you move more. As you drink more water, you will also need to let it out.
#9: Walk To Work Instead Of Driving
If you usually drive to work, you can skip that and try cycling, rollerblading, or even taking public transport. This not only helps add movements into your day, but it also helps you save money for parking and gas.
If you’re using the public commute, you can try standing the whole way or stopping a bus stop before yours, so you can walk the rest of the way.
The importance of moving throughout the day can not be overemphasized. The benefits of standing vs. sitting greatly outweigh the disadvantages. Maintaining regular movements, in general, gives you more energy and better health.