It’s official; it is now an actual fact that sitting for too long is bad for us.
Whilst there is no doubt that sedentary behavior as a result of long hours sitting at the office desk, hunched over a computer is bad for you, scientists have found that standing for longer can actually help lengthen your life. There was a very interesting article published in the New York Times last week that reported the results of two studies. Both of which confirm that standing more can increase your life span and can actually slow the ageing process of your cells.
So what can you do to stand more if you have a desk bound job?
I like to call it ‘active time’. In other words find ways to get more activity into your day where you are actually moving your whole body.
Here’s 5 simple suggestions to get moving:
Get up a little earlier and add ten minutes of walking to the beginning of your day.
Try getting off the bus/train or tube a stop early, or leaving your car further from the station; whatever you can do to find that extra ‘active time’. Not only is this better for your body, it will help you get your mind ready for work.
Note: do not text or make phone calls during this time! Try and stay focused on the activity itself.
Get up once an hour and go for a walk round the office.
This can be for any reason; get some water, go to the toilet, talk to a colleague rather than emailing them from the other side of the room! Anything to get you up and about. Better still if it involves going up and down a flight of stairs.
Take a lunch break and actually leave your desk.
Yes, go out into the big wide world for a break. Or why not ask a colleague to join you and walk to a different lunch spot together as part of your ‘active time’.
Take 10 extra minutes to get home.
Even though you may want to rush home after a long day, make yourself spend an 10 extra minutes walking as part of your journey home. Chances are once you’re home, you won’t want to go out again. So use this time. It’s also a great way to de-stress post work as walking will help you unwind from your day.
Take an exercise class
Whether you want to or not, your body will thank you for it. Commit to it and make sure you go every week. Once it becomes a habit it ‘s easy to stick with. If you’re already exercising, why not add another session. Maybe something different to mix it up a bit? Find something you enjoy and go for it.
And just remember, every little bit of extra standing you do has the potential to lengthen your life, and that can only be a good thing.
© Rachel Lawrence. All rights reserved. No reproduction without permission.