Sedentary jobs are on the rise, even if remote working is too, with more jobs fixed to technology and computers than ever before. However, what's great for business might not be good for us, as a recent review study suggests, with the amount of time spent sitting down linked to increased risk in serious health issues. Is it time to get up and move?
The University of Toronto study found that the negative impact on health of sitting for long periods of time is stronger with those people who rarely or never exercised compared to those who exercised more. In other words, exercise can offset some of the damage from our sitting-down lifestyles. Sedentary lifestyles are more often associated with higher risks of heart disease, diabetes and cancer, as well as mortality.
Don't just exercise, change your lifestyle
However, there is still more research needed in this area, to discover how much exercise can negate the effect of sitting for too long. Certainly, senior author of the study, Dr David Alter, an Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto, suspects that exercise along is not enough.
"More than one half of an average person's day is spent being sedentary – sitting, watching television, or working on a computer. Our study finds that despite the health-enhancing benefits of physical activity, this alone may not be enough to reduce the risk for disease."
It might not be enough to sit static in front of a screen all day and then simply get up and exercise a little. The answer really lies in not just changing your exercise regime but actually changing your lifestyle. If you are not sure how, then here are a few tips to get you stood up and moving in the right direction health and fitness-wise.
Are you sitting comfortably? - But for how long? Before you can initiate change really look and monitor at how much time you are actually spending sitting down. If you zone out looking at a computer monitor all day, then you might be in for a shock!
Think activity - Instead of just focusing on the idea of activity when you are exercising, try to find ways in which you can bring greater movement into your life. Make a conscious effort to stand up often at work and stretch your legs with a small walk or some exercises at your work station. Don't sit for too long, even if you have got a deadline! It is easy to lose track of time. Even when you are sat watching television in the evenings, you could exercise during the breaks or even catch up on your favorite series standing up!
Change your lifestyle - It is easy to create habits and while you might think it is difficult to change behavioral patterns, the motivation can come from knowing you are striving for positive change. Don't log onto social networking sites in the evening or browse the Internet for hours on end; turn off the television and move it so that it is not the focal point of your living room. Take televisions out of bedrooms and allocate tech-free hours at home, with perhaps a no-tech upstairs rule.
If you are sitting down and reading this then isn’t it time to stand up and get moving towards contacting us about your future fitness program?