Hey TALENTED WOMAN! Are you looking for ways to make your WORK LIFE more FULFILLING?
sitting many hours a day
Health

Sitting Many Hours A Day? Start Fidgeting!

By now we’ve all heard or read that sitting many hours a day is bad for our health. Unfortunately, it’s a reality for many working people.

I will spare you detailed statistics on what it can do to us. But according to this article from the Mayo Clinic, sitting more than 4 hours a day can increase our risk of death from any cause by nearly 50%. A bit discouraging…

“…the muscle activity needed for standing and other movement seems to trigger important processes related to the breakdown of fats and sugars within the body. When you sit, these processes stall — and your health risks increase.”

And exercising a few hours a week at the gym apparently would not counter this effect. BUT, research published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine reveals there may be a light at the end of the tunnel.

Data was gathered in England from over 12,000 women, identifying their average daily sitting time, overall fidgeting and a range of other habits. Participants were followed for mortality over a mean of 12 years. And results suggest that within the groups of women sitting for more than seven hours a day, the medium to high fidgeting groups had no increased mortality risk. Whereas the low fidgeting group did.

Although more research will be needed to support these findings, why not fidget while we wait? If small frequent movements can make a difference to keep our body active it’s certainly worth a try!

HERE ARE A FEW IDEAS YOU CAN INTEGRATE IN YOUR WORK HABITS TO REDUCE YOUR SITTING TIME:

sitting many hours a day

  • Stand while talking on the phone.
  • Stand while reading a document.
  • Use stairs instead of the elevators.
  • Walk over to speak to your colleague instead of calling or emailing him or her.
  • Leave a post-it on your desk reminding you to get up and stretch regularly.
  • This one may be a little “far out” but I’ve seen a colleague do it, and I must admit I would be curious to test it — Try working while sitting on an exercise ball.

ONE MORE SUGGESTION — let’s tell our managers and companies that our work environments should include some standing work stations or adjustable desks. Maybe that will help accelerate the process. Share this idea with your colleagues!

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