In today's society we are living a sedentary lifestyle more than we have ever in human existence. We now live in a world where convenience is king and if something is too far or too hard to get we simply make a phone call or jump online and get it delivered to us without us moving a muscle.
Unfortunately, our days are set up around sitting down. Most people wake up, get ready for work and jump into the car for at least a 30 min drive, but others can spend up to and over an hour travelling to work. We then get to work where we sit at our desks for at least 7-9 hours of the day before we finish late and get back in that car for another gruelling one hour trip home. By the time we get home we are that tired that all we want to do is sit in front of the television and forget about the day that was.
By then end of the day when we are ready to shut down and go to sleep for the next 7-8 hours we have already been sitting and sedentary for a total of 10-12 hours, which means for 83% of our day we are sedentary and not moving. Studies have shown people that are sedentary for 6 or more hours in their day have a 64% increased risk of heart disease, which means you are cutting at least 7 years off your life. You're also 30% more at risk of prostate and breast cancer. Simply put, sitting is killing you.
The great news is it doesn't take much to reverse the effects of inactivity and it all starts by just being aware of how much you actually move in your day. It is not uncommon for people to move less than 2,500 steps in their day when research indicates that we should be trying to move at least 10,000 steps. That is when a pedometer, any fitness watch or even your iPhone can come in handy as these are all tools to track how many steps we complete in our day and how active we are.
When you do start to track your activity, it will become apparent that to complete your 10,000 steps per day you'll need to consciously partake in at least one activity where you are moving for an extended period. So a great start would be to set an alarm on your watch or phone for every 40 mins to alert you to get up from your desk and either go for a walk around the office, to the toilet or to the kitchen to get some water. Then by adding an easy 30 min walk or exercise session to your morning or evening you will easily be able to complete your 10,000 steps per day and well on your way to reducing the effects of sedentary death syndrome. There's no time like the present to get moving, so if you've been sitting down reading this article. Up and at 'em!
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