This comment made me move away from my desk:
“A sedentary lifestyle day can kill you. Move away from your desk!” shared Dr. Vonda Wright, a board-certified orthopedic sports medicine surgeon at Northside Hospital Orthopedic Institute in Atlanta.
Sit less. Move more. “There are 33 illnesses impacted by a sedentary lifestyle,” noted Dr. Wright, who also serves as board chair for the Atlanta Chapter of the American Heart Association.
The American Heart Association recommends adults get at least 150 minutes of physical activity a week. (2016 American Heart Association advisory). Yet, people remained tethered to their desks sitting in front of computers for long periods of time. It is not healthy! Businesses need to encourage more health breaks for employees throughout the day.
“Anything you can do seated you should try standing or moving,” said Dr. Wright. Here are a few tips:
- Try taking walking meetings with colleagues and friends rather than seated coffee breaks.
- Invest in a standing desk or use a bar level counter top as your desk.
- Take short, 5-10 minute, exercise breaks during the day. Jog in place. Do jumping jacks. keep resistance bands at your desk and use them.
- Put an exercise mat in front of the television set and do leg lifts and core work while watching TV.
- Invest in hand weights to add resistance training to your workout.
However, some things require sitting in place for health, safety and practicality:
- Reading, texting and looking at your mobile phone
- Eating and drinking. Mindful eating involved sitting down and slowly savoring every bite.
- Attending a video meeting. I really hate seeing people walk around on the screen.
- Caring for a baby (nursing, feeding, etc.).
Here are a few creative ways I add exercise into my workday at home:
Kitchen pliés and leg lifts. I do a round of leg lifts and dance pliés while preparing a meal.
Veggie arm curls. Buy two decent size butternut squash or large zucchini and do a few reps of arm curls. Afterward, you can cook the squash for a healthy meal!
Water bottle arm lifts. Here’s a great way to tone arms and hydrate. Fill two water bottles and use as hand weights to do light arm curls and lifts. Then drink up!
Door pulls and squats. Invest in resistant bands and tie to sturdy door handles to do arm pulls and squats.
Kitchen counter and sofa stretches. Hip and waist level sofas and counters serve as my ballet barre for stretching. Just make sure your furniture is sturdy and will not move.
Toilet squats. After doing my business, I do 20 hip bends or squats before leaving the bathroom.
Check out my show on bone health and strength training here. In the second segment, during my conversation with fitness trainer, Joan Pagano, I share some of my at-home workout tips. During our conversation, Pagano zeroed in on resistance training and its many benefits to strengthen your bones and muscles while sculpting and toning your body. Take a look at her website which is filled with info and a fabulous photo of super fit Pagano who is in her 70s. www.joanpaganofitness.com.