Stair Walking - iStock

Sit 23+ Hours A Week? You Must Move Now

When you sit all day, you may need more than dedicated workouts to keep yourself in good health.

Stair Walking - iStockFITTER BY THE MINUTE It is well known that heart disease is one of the leading causes of death among Canadians. But a recent study was shocked to find that going to the gym does not make up for all the sedentary time we spend. This is bad news for professional sitters (i.e., those of us who sit at desk to make a living). A recent New York Times article indicated that even if we live reasonably healthy lives but sit for more than 23 hours a week, we are 64 percent more likely to die from heart disease. According to the study, even for those who have nixed cream and go jogging, it is not enough to counteract the effects of all of that sitting. So unless you are planning on a career change to bike courier or rickshaw driver, insert a bit of activity into your office hours by giving your daily grind some heart.

This simple active routine will boost your heart rate (not to mention your popularity and productivity).

Heart Healthy Routines

Take Your Fifteen
Most of us are entitled to breaks, but few of us actually take them. Guilt? Overload? Whatever your reason for not going, get over it. It’s for your health. Try power walking and see how far you can get in five minutes. Tackle a few flights of stairs. Go up a block and power it back. You will come back refreshed and get much more done over the long haul.

Help Out
Load the photocopier, make the coffee or offer to help put that new office furniture together. Not only will your coworkers love you just a little bit more, but you will also be providing yourself with a chance to get your blood pumping. It’s helpful in more ways than one.

Go Hunting
Is your go-to lunch a coffee shop sandwich, really fantastic or just convenient? Mix up your routine by wandering a little farther afield. Become the office expert on all the healthy places to lunch and snack within a seven-block radius of your workplace.

Walk And Talk
Yes, you can actually do two things at once. While you are making your calls, get up and stroll around your office. Maybe do a bit of light stretching to get the blood flowing. Just keep a pen and paper handy for those important memos.

Become An Explorer
When you do get vacation time, try not to flake out for the week beside a pool with a mojito. Instead be adventurous with a heart-healthy week of cycling around Paris or kayaking the Sunshine Coast. Your stories and vacation pictures will be much more exciting to share with friends when you return. —Natasha Irvine

Photo: iStock

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