Just how bad is a sedentary lifestyle?
According to a study published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings, prolonged sitting affected people’s fitness levels regardless of whether they exercised or not. In fact it looks like sitting for just two hours cancels out the cardiorespiratory benefits of 20 minutes of exercise. So, that might be okay if you can spend at least two hours at the gym to counteract all of the sitting that you have to do throughout the day – and you most likely are sitting most of the day (unless you are a teacher or work in construction). But very few of us even manage the daily 30 minutes recommended by the American Heart Association so ‘avoiding sedentary behavior throughout the day may represent an important companion strategy to improve fitness and health, outside of regular exercise activity.’
This may sound a bit hopeless until you discover that there are great ways to counteract this serious problem; “We also found that when sitting for prolonged periods of time, any movement is good movement, and was also associated with better fitness,” Dr. Jacquelyn Kulinski, a recent graduate from the UT Southwestern Cardiology Fellowship Training Program, said in a statement. “So if you are stuck at your desk for a while, shift positions frequently, get up and stretch in the middle of a thought, pace while on a phone call, or even fidget.”
Does that recommendation sound a little vague to you too? Not to worry! Each day you will find awesome exercises on the Minute Movement Members Page – so instead of risking a dropped call when you pace into the office’s dead zone, you can take proven steps to improve your fitness every day!