Move More, Sit Less
The number one excuse for being sedentary is not having enough time to work out. Many people do not have an extra 60-90 minutes everyday to get to the gym. So, how can you incorporate more movement into your life without the extra time commitment? Note that we are talking about MOVEMENT and not EXERCISE. Most people consider exercise to be a formal game of basketball, a trip to the gym, or completing 50 lengths at your local pool. However, adding multiple short bouts of movement to your day can be just as beneficial as a single session of formal exercise. Humans were not designed to sit for 8 hours straight then go hard at the gym for an hour. In fact, this common lifestyle is still considered to be sedentary and those people are still vulnerable to the many negative effects of excessive sitting. However, there are some simple ways to add movement to your day without ever having to hit the gym. Don’t underestimate the positive impact of non-exercise activity. Little things can add up to big changes. Like most things, consistency is key. Even if you already exercise regularly, you can still use these tips to add even more daily movement.
1. If you have a sedentary office job, stand up every 30 minutes
2. Walk or bike to work or school
3. Take the stairs instead of the elevator
4. Park a little further away from the store, work, or mall
5. Dance or play with your children or grandchildren
6. Stretch while you watch TV
7. Have a walking business meeting when possible
8. Change your coffee date to a walk, hike or skate
9. Do squats while waiting for the water to boil
10. Do calf raises while on the phone
11. Incorporate movement breaks regularly at work**
** Consider Pilates for your movement breaks. I have designed a 10-minute standing Pilates routine that requires minimal space and no equipment. It restores movement to the spine, hips, shoulders and ankles, which can stiffen from prolonged sitting. I often use it as a warm-up in my classes.
Try a class today and invest in your health!