Are you sitting at your desk? Have you been sitting there for several hours? Stand up right now and walk around your desk, or down the hall, or better yet go fill up your water bottle and take a few big gulps. Go ahead, I’ll wait…
This recent NPR article from New York Times columnist Gretchen Reynolds details a few simple ways you can combat the effects of a sedentary lifestyle. According to Reynolds:
“Sitting for long periods of time — when you don’t stand up, don’t move at all — tends to cause changes physiologically within your muscles. You stop breaking up fat in your bloodstream, you start getting accumulations of fat … in your liver, your heart and your brain. You get sleepy. You gain weight. You basically are much less healthy than if you’re moving.”
I would add that taking periodic breaks from your computer also reduces eye strain and lower back pain. Reynolds recommends standing for two minutes every 20 minutes while desk-bound — even if you can’t move around your office. She suggests getting a music stand to hold your papers and standing each time your phone rings. Are you a into cool software aps? Here are a few online tools to remind you to take periodic breaks from your computer. Plus the little EVO guy is pretty cute.
What tips have helped you be less sedentary?