DON’T JUST SIT THERE!

Health & Nutrition - - FITNESS FORUM -

Easy ways to in­crease ac­tiv­ity and cut down on seden­tary time. Work­ing on a com­puter, watch­ing TV, and look­ing at smart phones and tablets are all part of mod­ern liv­ing. But the ‘sit-time’ in­volved with each ac­tiv­ity is set­ting us back when it comes to health. What’s the prob­lem with pro­longed sit­ting? It trig­gers a cas­cade of neg­a­tive changes on your health. When peo­ple are seden­tary, they lose mus­cle mass, mo­bil­ity and flex­i­bil­ity. They stop us­ing blood sugar ef­fi­ciently and may gain weight or de­velop de­pres­sion. Aim for two or three fewer seden­tary hours in a day. Stand up and move around for one to three min­utes ev­ery half hour. Ev­ery day, add two more min­utes of ac­tiv­ity. The good news: You’ll have more en­ergy, you’ll sleep bet­ter, and you’ll train your­self to stop sit­ting so much and start mov­ing more. Ask your part­ner or a friend to join you in the quest to re­duce sit­ting time, then hold each other ac­count­able. And keep track of the amount of new ac­tive time you add to your day. An easy way to start: Set a timer to re­mind you to move one to three min­utes ev­ery half hour through­out the day. When the alarm goes off, get mov­ing with th­ese sit busters: Stand while watch­ing TV, talk­ing on the phone, fold­ing laun­dry, writ­ing a let­ter, pay­ing bills, or us­ing a lap­top com­puter (try putting it on a kitchen counter top). Stand up and sit down re­peat­edly, march in place, lie on your side and do leg lifts, or lift small weights.

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