Physical exercise is important. We all need to move and get our heart rates up. But how much you exercise is a moot point if you spend the rest of your day sitting. Research shows that prolonged sedentary time is independently associated with many negative health outcomes, regardless of physical activity.
So even if you’re getting to the gym and working out an hour a day, if you’re spending two or more hours of the rest of your day sitting, you are at increased risk for a whole slew of health problems. I knew sitting was bad. But I did some digging and was shocked at just how bad it is. Are you ready for this?
The Negative Effects of Sitting Too Much*
- Shaves five years off of your life.
- Increased cancer risk by up to 66%.
- 18% increase in risk for heart disease.
- 90% higher incidence of diabetes.
- 24% greater odds of dying from any cause.
- Increased risk for kidney disease.
- More likely to have depression or other mental health issues, especially among women.
The April Challenge as part of the Happy Healthy Mama Healthy Year Challenge is Move More. I want everyone to understand that it’s not just about working out, it’s also about being active throughout your day and not sitting too much. Sitting has become a big part of our culture. We sit and watch TV, we sit and look at our computer, tablets, and phones. We sit.
This is something I’ve been focusing on this month. I naturally need to sit a lot to do things like edit photos and write blog posts. I’ve been working on taking breaks to move instead of just sitting. While I’m always trying to get my workouts in, I’m also seeing how important it is to not spend the rest of my day being inactive. Focusing on this is helping! I’ve seen an increase in my steps each week, which means that overall I’m sitting less. Here’s how my fitness and activity was this week:
Move More Challenge Update: Week 3
ran 3 miles
ran 4 miles
55 minute Metabolic Workout Class at the Y
Ran 5K race (3.2 miles)
Golfed 9 holes
This week I had an increase of 24,831 steps! This is what the Healthy Year Challenge is all about. Seeing where you are, and working on getting better.