It is indeed surprising that something as innocuous as sitting down can pose such a threat to our general health. Today, when most of our daily activities can be done at a desk with a tap on the phone, there is not much time or scope for getting up and moving around. Our jobs require us to be seated for at least eight hours a day. Our travel time is spent sitting in cars and buses. Our leisure hours are spent lying on the couch. The causes of a sedentary lifestyle are many, but they all boil down to advanced technology, sheer necessity, and reluctance.
A sedentary lifestyle – which means a routine that involves little or no physical activity and regular movement – can put you at the risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, weak muscles and bones, improper circulation, and lower mental alertness. Here are five tips to avoid a sedentary lifestyle and its effects:
1. Get away from your desk
Your job may require you to sit at your desk from nine to five, but it definitely won’t cost you anything to take a short break every hour, and take a walk around your office. Get up and stretch a little, greet your colleagues, visit the coffee machine, hold a meeting without sitting down – the excuses are many. These walk breaks may reverse the effects of prolonged sitting-down.
2. Go for a brisk walk
Take a brisk walk for thirty minutes every day. It boosts your heart health and improves your mental health as well. It improves circulation and has all the benefits of any other exercise routine.
3. Avoid sitting down unless absolutely necessary
You cannot possibly read or write while walking, but there are many other things you can do without sitting down. The next time you’re listening to music, walk around. Walk while talking on the phone, do simple exercises while watching TV, meet your friend for a stroll in the park instead of coffee.
4. Walk or cycle short distances
It can be really tempting to pick up your bike keys and go grocery shopping even if the market is two lanes away. You can go and come back in time for your favourite part of the movie. But you can do your body a favour by walking over to the market even if it takes an extra ten minutes. Cycling is also a good alternative to driving.
5. Take the stairs
We get transported from our house to our place of work in a vehicle. We get transported from the basement to the office floor in yet another machine. Cut down the number of passive movements by avoiding the lift and taking the stairs. Of course, this does not mean that if your office is on the seventh floor, you huff and puff your way up. This can be counterproductive and stress out your heart. You know your physical limits: take the stairs only if it is physically possible, or only on the way down.
With a few tweaks in your daily routine, you can completely avoid one of the biggest causes of health problems today. You can put a stop to a sedentary lifestyle by getting up and moving, taking initiative and spending more time on your feet than in your chair. You will soon realise that not only does it help you physically, but also clear your mind and help keep it fresh and sharp.
Another step away from a sedentary lifestyle involves taking an active interest in your health. Seal the deal by taking a health insurance policy so that no matter what the situation, your finances will be covered, leaving you to focus on improving your health. With ManipalCigna’s easy EMIs and easy returns, you can rest assured that your health is in good hands. Head over to their website to select a plan that suits you best.