Happy Friday my friends! Preventative Health series is back this week and I want to talk about being active more throughout your day.
I want to clarify between being active and exercising first. Being active means not sitting on your butt all day and exercising is doing HIIT, aerobics, spinning, power yoga, workout dvd’s etc.
The healthiest people are the most active
The dangers of a sedentary lifestyle include: mood swings, anxiety, depression, insomnia, increased risk of cancer, increased risk of diabetes, increased risk of obesity, reduced brain function and possible increased risk of dementia, increased cholesterol and blood sugar, low libido levels, and back pain as well as other body aches.
As a personal trainer, I encourage everyone to exercise, but you don’t have to go crazy with it. I see so many people who workout like a crazy person every morning for 30-60 minutes but then spend the rest of the day hardly moving at all. This doesn’t do your body any good. Many Americans have desk jobs so it’s not entirely their fault, but if you’ve ever looked at the people that live in the “Blue Zone” regions, they lead active lives yet they never go to a gym or do “exercise”. Being active is just a part of their day- walking everywhere, doing chores with their hands not machines, running errands on foot and just enjoying yoga or tai chi or sports and games with friends.
Even if you don’t want or need to lose weight, sitting too much is detrimental to your health and being active is a good way to maintain your current weight. Staying active throughout the day improves the quality of your life in big and small ways. It makes lifting things like a suitcase or your child and walking up and down the stairs easier; it also relieves stress and improves posture. The World Health Organization states that regular movement boosts “healthy life expectancy” and might help you sleep better. It can also help relieve mild to moderate depression and recent studies have shown that being active can make cancer treatments more effective. Staying active can also help repair the body and prevent injuries in the first place.
Tips to add more activity and move more throughout your day!
- Instead of sending an e-mail to your colleague 10 cubicles away, walk over to them and say what you would have in your e-mail.
- Instead of drinking your morning coffee in bed or sitting at the table, enjoy it while strolling around your neighborhood.
- Get up from your desk every 20 minutes.
- Use your ear buds/bluetooth and talk on the phone while pacing your office or tidying the house.
- Keep your phone across the room from you so every time it goes off you have to get up and go get it.
- If you love reading, try an audio book and listen to it while walking.
- Ride your bike around your neighborhood or to visit a friend/family member.
- Be silly at home, whether alone or with your kids. Get a dance game/DVD/video and just dance or put on a good song and dance to it.
- Try out a new activity; trapeze, water polo, circus class, float yoga, swimming, dodgeball, basketball, tennis, softball, roller skating. Try something active and discover what is the most fun for you.
- Join a hiking club or a running/walking group. (as a personal trainer, I love doing Walking Workouts with people) or start a hiking or running/walking club with friends and coworkers.
- Instead of sitting and waiting while your child is in dance class or sports, suggest an activity to do with other parents while you wait.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Park the farthest parking space away from the store if you drive somewhere.
- Do some body-weight exercises while watching television or walk around the room during commercials.
The takeaway from today’s post is just to move more! What are some of your favorite ways to be active?
Stay Healthy my Friends!
Carrie A Groff
P.S. If you haven’t signed up for my 52 Healthy Habits course, what are you waiting for? It’s a free course where you will receive 1 email every Monday morning that has 1 healthy habit that you can add to your life to make 2017 your healthiest year yet! Sign up here and you will start receiving your emails the Monday following your confirmation email. You will also get free access to my 52 Healthy Habits Facebook group.