by using a standing desk.
Although many of us experience this modern 21st-century life as fast-paced and fast-moving, have you ever paused to consider how much you time you actually spend sitting down?
Driving, office work, watching TV — it all adds up, and the more you sit, the more detrimental it is to your health.
You might want to stand up for this…
Sitting more than six hours a day makes you 40% likelier to die within 15 years compared to someone who sits less than three. That’s right: sitting shortens your life.
by Dane Findley
Stand Up for Your Life: a Good Desk Makes All the Difference
We tend to underestimate how much time we spend at our desks. Because the desk is so central to our daily lives, having a good one is an easy way to help ourselves feel better:
- ⊙ on average we sit for 9.3 hours while we spend 7.7 hours sleeping
- ⊙ obese people sit for 2.5 hours more per day than thin people
- ⊙ between 1980 and 2000: Exercise rates stayed the same while sitting time increased 8% and obesity doubled
- ⊙ while sitting, calorie-burning drops to 1 per minute
So it’s settled then. Not to be too dramatic, but the chair is a four-legged grim reaper. Okay, that’s pretty dramatic, but don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be this way. You just have to rethink the way you work at a computer. Standing not only helps your spine and increases your physical energy, it also improves your productivity.
Many are beginning to realize the effects of sitting all day and the interest in stand-up desks has increased.
There is now a selection of tall desks — as simple as a table with taller legs or as futuristic as an electronic height-adjustable desk (with the dual-function of a sit down desk and stand up desk).
Don’t be daunted at the prospect of spending 8 hours a day standing at a desk. Standing all day isn’t that good for you either. You just need to strike a balance between the two by making a few adjustments and finding a schedule that works for you. I like to spend 1.5 hours standing followed by 1.5 hours sitting, and then repeat. As you build your strength, you’ll be happy to spend more time on your feet. You get used to it!
Try to Stand a Little More Each Day
If your workplace doesn’t offer a stand up desk be sure to break up your sit down time.
If you have a desk job, you may have thought you’d escaped occupational hazards usually associated with working outside, but manual labor has its health benefits; namely: standing.
Good ideas for an interruption are: stretching, walking in place, jogging on the spot or jumping jacks. Walking burns 3 to 5 times the amount of calories than sitting, so take every opportunity to walk around the office. Avoid calling or emailing your colleague and walk to their desk instead.
You can always limit the amount of time you sit at home. The less you sit at your own computer or in front of the TV, the less impact your sitting at the office will have on your health. Remember, getting 30 minutes of exercise a day is not enough to fight off all the damage sitting does. The only way to do that is to cut down the amount of time you sit at your desk.
If you’re going to sit, make sure to recline your chair to a 135 degree angle. We have all been trained to sit forward or up straight from years of nagging by our school teachers but this is not right or healthy. It actually puts too much strain on your back.
“…the human body simply isn’t built to sit
for long periods of time. A hundred years ago, when we
were all out toiling in the fields and factories,
obesity was basically nonexistent. But since we can’t exactly
run free in the fields til the end of our days,
we have to help our bodies in other ways.
We have to stand up for our right to stand up“
It will take at least a week to get used to your standing desk so be sure to rotate positions when tired, and have a foot rest in front of you to give each foot a break every now and then.
Give it a try and let me know how you are doing. I love seeing pictures of people’s desks, too, so please send them to me! Meanwhile, check out the infographic below:
Live the High-Energy Lifestyle!
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