Sitting Un-pretty

C1 and C2 walking hand-in-hand

C1 and C2 walking hand-in-hand

I’m typing out this post STANDING. My iPad’s on my (high) kitchen benchtop. Sounds strange? Well, it feels even stranger!
You see, ever since B and I tuned into 60 Minutes on Sunday, I’ve become more aware of how much sitting around I do.
Here’s the link to the program’s segment on Sitting, in case you’re interested:

Apparently, we’re sitting more than we are sleeping nowadays. Many of us sit for more than nine hours a day – compared to just over seven hours of shut-eye a night.
Unfortunately, the convenience of modern living has led to an inconvenient truth: we are sitting ourselves to death! Doctors say sitting is the new smoking.
It has led to big backsides, bigger bellies and the biggest health problems developed countries have ever seen: Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, obesity, osteoporosis, even depression – the stats are alarming.

Think about your day:
You wake up and the first thing you probably do is sit on the toilet.
And then you sit down to breakfast.
Next, you sit down during your daily commute – on the train, in the bus, in your car.
If you work, you’re probably chained to your desk for the next eight hours or more. I bet you forget to get up enough and stretch or take those eyes off your laptop.
More sitting around while your kids are doing their after-school activities…
You all sit down to a nice family dinner and then you veg out in front of the TV for a couple of hours before you hit the sack.

Sounds familiar?

My Mizunos air out after a run

My Mizunos air out after a run

When I think about it, I realise that it’s a modern-day malaise. We’ve taken the hard work out of almost everything. No more manual labour! Whether it’s hard jobs like hand-washing your clothes or tiny tasks like physically getting up to change the channel on TV. Everything is easy-peasy, lemon-squeezy!

I guess awareness is the first step.
Every time you sit, stop yourself and ask if you can do the same thing standing.
Right now, it’s still feeling pretty weird to be typing this out standing. But it’s definitely made me more aware of my posture. And my back is killing me!

Your next step would be to getting moving. It’s not enough to exercise for 30 minutes a day. So add some incidental exercise to your day-to-day life. Here are some examples:
* Take the stairs instead of the lift.
* Hang out the washing instead of using the dryer (good for the environment too!).
* Do a spot of gardening.
* Catch up with friends NOT over a coffee in a cafe, but by going for a morning walk. Good for your souls and soles!
* Walk your kids to school or activities instead of automatically jumping into the car.
* When at work, set a timer to remind you to get up from your desk and stretch. Make it a group effort so that your colleagues do it too.
* If you use public transport, get off a stop or two earlier and walk to your destination.
* Park in the farthest spot possible when you go to the shops.
* Get up during those ad breaks on TV and do something – load the dishwasher, fold the laundry, etc.

This post is over and all I want to do is sit down! Goes to show what a long way I’ve got to go…

So tell me, how do you include incidental exercise into your daily life? Do you exercise regularly – love it or hate it? What kind of exercise do you enjoy (walking, swimming, tennis, horse-riding)?


4 responses to “Sitting Un-pretty

  1. Try wearing a pedometer for a few days… It’s amazing to see how much you do get around some days (and not on others!!) it’s also great motivation to reach the ideal of 10-12k steps a day!


  2. You’re absolutely right – just a few days ago I gave similar tips to a friend of mine and also used the “Sitting is the new smoking”-statement. 😉
    Well, in my opinion it is totally essential to get used to as much exercise as possible – especially if you sit a lot at work.

    A pedometer is very useful to check your actual “movement-level”. I also wear one and… well, maybe I’m a bit obsessed. (When I couldn’t find it a few days ago I was like “OMG, where is it?!”)
    I started running in January and at the moment I run about 7 – 8 km four or five times a week. In the beginning it was something I thought I had to do to loose weight and to become healthier, but now it’s something I absolutely WANT to do. 🙂
    It’s a bit strange and I wouldn’t have thought that that could happen, but I feel like there’s something missing on the days I don’t run.

    Liked by 1 person

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