Rest is good for the body, but if we are being honest, a lot of us have become couch potatoes in the name of resting. Truthfully, there is a thin line between what we call resting and a sedentary lifestyle. But our bodies are not meant to decide for us what to do with them, instead, it should be the other way round. We are in the best position to take care of our bodies, and today we are going to look at some simple exercises to combat a sedentary lifestyle and improve activeness.
But first, why is a sedentary lifestyle detrimental to our bodies?
According to National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPH), not getting enough physical activity can lead to heart disease, raise a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes, or increase the risk of many cancers, including cancers of the breast, colon, and uterus. Also note that living a sedentary lifestyle can cause you to burn a few calories less than your body requires, leading to weight gain. You can also lose muscle strength due to not using your muscles enough. Poor blood circulation, weak bones, and not-so-strong immune systems are also some other downsides of being inactive physically.
Now, this is not to scare you, but as much as we always keep it positive on this end, we need to keep it real as well. We need our bodies in the right shape to be able to function in business, family, careers, etc. and as such we have to wage war against physical inactivity. As we already know, the disadvantages of a sedentary lifestyle include health risks as we have mentioned earlier and that means that getting it fixed promises us a healthier lifestyle.
However, creating a new normal is going to require some conscious effort. If you have a daily routine of moving less and sitting or lying more, try to cultivate the habit of taking a walk. The goal is to transition from immobile to mobile, so get up and walk. You can walk around your house or down the street or from one room to the other, just ensure you get up from that bed or seat and walk. This may sound simple, but it is very easy to forget that you need to walk so, set timers to remind you to walk – to get groceries or back from the movies. You can take a walk with friends, walk your dog, or walk alone, but if you work from home and have to sit throughout the day, this is highly recommended.
Likewise, if you spend most of the time in an office with a bit of movement here and there, you might want to use the stairs – if available – rather than an elevator or escalator. Your body needs an adequate amount of movement to stay in shape and as much as you want to live the soft life you have been working for, you cannot afford to be too soft on your body. Another thing to do is to develop a new hobby that would grant you enough room for physical activities such as gardening, swimming, jogging, dancing, or biking.
Lastly, suppose you are finding it difficult to combat your sedentary lifestyle and improve activeness with any of these tips, you can try making yourself accountable to a friend or relative who can keep tabs on you. After all, what are friends for?
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