Sitting Too Much? How to Counteract Negative Effects with Exercise
With a stay-at-home advisory in Arizona (and all over the world), a lot of us are spending significantly more time at home—and much more time sitting too much.
We’ve touched on this issue before and discussed how reports are describing too much sitting as the new smoking. Well, with the gyms closed and so many people stuck at home, the issue has come up again recently.
A review that was published in the scientific journal The Lancet looked at how much exercising you should be doing each day based on how often you’re sitting. Instead of giving a blanket recommendation of 30 minutes per day for at least 5 days a week, these researchers went a step further. Here’s what they found.
Researchers from this review analyzed data from 16 separate research studies. These studies included data from over one million adults over the age of 45 from the United States, Western Europe, and Australia. The researchers compared time spent sitting versus time spent exercising and mortality rates and developed a formula that may be able to counteract the effects of sitting and lead to a healthier life.
Based on this data, the researchers concluded that if you spend around 8 hours sitting each day, you should be exercising (and that’s moderate to intense exercise) for at least one hour every day. If you sit for 6 hours, you should be exercising for at least 30 minutes each day.
The numbers may seem daunting, but here’s the good news. An hour of exercise takes up only 4 percent of your whole day. The other good news is that research also shows that this exercise doesn’t have to take place all at once.
If you can’t commit to an hour at a time, you can split your exercise into two half hour sessions or 6 bursts of 10 minutes each. The major goal is to sit less, so anything you can do to get your body moving is a step in the right direction.
As you’re spending more time at home, find ways to keep yourself moving, like cleaning the house, walking your dog, or even turning on some music and dancing in the kitchen while you cook dinner.