Many people I know, including myself, get up and exercise before their day gets busy. It is a great feeling to get up, be active and get your workout completed. The question is, what do you do for the rest of the day? That is where the activity challenge begins! Did you say activity challenge?
Research says to exercise for at least 30 minutes per day. Consistency in physical activity is one of the most import things you can do for your health. Physical activity can help reduce the risk of disease, improve balance, help manage weight, and strengthen bones and muscles. Walking 30 minutes is good but sitting for many hours after is not beneficial. It is better to move frequently throughout the day to reduce inactivity.
Being sedentary can be linked to poor sleep, depression, muscle loss, lowering metabolism, high blood pressure, to name a few. We need to think about how we can incorporate activity throughout the day.
Since we need to sit less and be more active, here is the challenge:
- Look for long periods of sitting in your day
- Notice if they are part of your daily routine
- Devise ways to break them up
Here are a couple examples of adding activity
- Desk job-you have a desk job and before you know it, 4 or more hours have passed. Look for ways to move during that time frame. Take the long way to the bathroom or coffee pot to get in 3-5 min of walking on the way.
- Watch TV-you like to watch TV during the evening. Take an exercise break during commercials or between shows. Get up do a lap around the house or do arm circles.
Other ways to stay active during the day
- Wear a fitness tracker or Apple watch that reminds you to stand and move every hour
- Take the stairs whenever you can
- Park away from the store entrance so you can have a longer walk to the door
- Ride an exercise bike during your show
- Do a couple of laps around the grocery store before you start your shopping
- Walk to the mailbox
Prolonged inactivity can lead to an unhealthy lifestyle. Let’s look for ways to stay active throughout the day. Join the activity challenge.