Recess + Wellness

 

Follow the wise words of the New York Times: Get up. Get out. Don’t sit. This week their blog Well published a timely article addressing the dangers of our increasingly sedentary lifestyle. While the findings are not new, the most recent statistics from the reports poignantly describe the epidemic:

Every single hour of television watched after the age of 25 reduces the viewer’s life expectancy by 21.8 minutes.

An adult who spends an average of six hours a day watching TV over the course of a lifetime can expect to live 4.8 years fewer than a person who does not watch TV.

We might convince ourselves that we are not at risk of disease because we manage the recommended 30 minutes of exercise a day, but we are still at risk if we sit all day.

When muscles don’t contact, they require less fuel, and the surplus, in the form of blood sugar, accumulates in the bloodstream, contributing to diabetes risk and other health concerns.

The stats are alarming, to say the least. But there are numerous (easy) ways to prevent these future health problems. Even if you exercise regularly, sitting in front of your computer all day can still be detrimental to your health. Set a timer for yourself at work to make sure you get up at least once every hour. Try these other ideas:

-Put the garbage bin on the other side of the office.

-Stand during coffee breaks and telephone calls.

-Organize standing meetings.

-Create a standing desk. Be creative.

-If you take public transportation, stand on the bus or subway.

-Ask a coworker to go on a quick walk with you around the block.

-Park in the first spot that you see, even if it’s not the closest one.

Share your ideas for staying healthy with us in the comments below.

KEEN Recess was featured in Forbes earlier this month: Message to Brands: Give Americans a Break.