6 easy ways to fight the dangers of sitting all day
Tips to help counteract sitting all day, every day
How many hours each day do you spend sitting down? If you have an office job, chances are you’re sitting for most of the day.
Most of us spend the better part of our day in front of screens like our TV, computer and phone with the average Australian sitting for almost 10 hours a day. A sedentary lifestyle can increase our risk of being overweight and developing chronic health issues, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers. It can also have a detrimental impact on our mental health.
Our bodies aren’t made to sit for long period of time, so here are some easy tips to include more standing and activity in our day.
1. Get moving
Make sure you incorporate some form of exercise each day. It could be going for a walk at lunchtime, some stretching, weights or Pilates. Find what works for you and what you enjoy doing so you stick to it. They key is to find something that fits with you and your schedule, that you don’t dread! While taking time to exercise is great for our overall well-being it doesn’t completely counteract the effects of being inactive for the rest of the day. So it’s important to look at other opportunities throughout the day to get up and move.
2. On the hour
Set an alarm on your phone to get up every hour and move. Stand up, do some stretching and go for a quick walk around. There are plenty of apps out there that can help remind you to move. It’s recommended that for every 50 minutes you spend sitting down, take ten minutes to get up and move, so make it a priority to get off your chair.
3. Refill your water
While it’s good to have a drink bottle at your desk, why not use a smaller water glass that needs refilling more often? Aim to drink at least a glass every hour and that way you’ll need to get up to refill it frequently.
4. Stand up
If possible, opt for a standing desk. Not only will your reap the benefits of not sitting, standing desks can increase productivity, energy and brain function. If a standing desk isn’t possible, find some other hacks to get up and stand more often. Get into the habit of standing when you’re on the phone. Wireless headphones means you can walk around without getting caught up in cords or even organise standing meetings with colleagues.
5. Walk and talk
We’ve all sent an email to someone who works within walking distance. Why not get up and have a conversation with the person you need to email. You can always follow up your conversation with an email if you need a paper trail. Not only will your body thank you, you’ll also be building stronger work connections.
6. Lunch breaks
Use your lunch break to its full potential. Rather than eating your lunch el desko, use it to get some fresh air, give your eyes a rest from the screen, stretch your legs and have a brain break from work. You’ll find your concentration and productivity for the afternoon can even improve.