Weight gain is just the most obvious detriment, the effect of which can run from gamut — from high blood pressure and diabetes to heart disease.
The lack of blood flood can lead to stiffness (a lot of you know what I’m talking about) in your joints and back, as well as contributing to weak, flabby abs.
Being sedentary all day can also lower your metabolism, which means you’ll burn even fewer calories than you do now.
And finally it’s easy to ignore the mental effects. A stationary body means a stationary mind, which, like the rest of your body, may also atrophy, leading to anxiety and maybe even depression.
So have we scared you enough?!
If you knew these things already you likely fall in one of two camps: You’re either trying to counter the ill effects of sitting on your tush for 8+ hours daily by at least getting up and stretching (and maybe running to the bathroom or out to lunch); or you’re doing nothing, maybe because the thought of going to any exercise class or jogging or any other high-intensity workout is, frankly, just too much to grasp.
Just two minutes of walking every hour may not only counter the ill effects of a sit-down lifestyle, but may also extend your life!
That’s what a group of researchers at the University of Utah School of Medicine discovered and published in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (CJASN). They studied more than 3,000 participants over three years.
Essentially, the researchers deduced that strolling and other light activities use energy and can add up over the course of just a few days. The group assumed two minutes of walking each hour (over 16 awaking hours), which burned 400 kcal weekly. That’s close to the 600 kcal recommended weekly goal of moderate exercise, and way more than the 50 kcal described as qualifying as low-intensity training over a week.
The results? Those who maintained the regimen were aligned with having a 33 percent lower risk of dying, not to mention the even more immediate positive effects of the activity.
“Based on these results we would recommend adding two minutes of walking each hour in combination with normal activities, which should include 2.5 hours of moderate exercise each week,” said lead author Srinivasan Beddhu, M.D., professor of internal medicine, in ScienceDaily.com. “Moderate exercise strengthens the heart, muscles, and bones, and confers health benefits that low and light intensity activities can’t.
“It was fascinating to see the results because the current national focus is on moderate or vigorous activity. To see that light activity had an association with lower mortality is intriguing,” he added.