Too Much Sitting is Killing Us
Really – right now, adjust your monitor, securely hold your tablet, but whatever it takes, I’m challenging you to stand while you read this brief article. Get up on your feet – balance your weight evenly between your legs, knees slightly bent, back relaxed, not hunched over …. are you ready?
Sitting = Poor Health
Sitting for extended periods of time (3+ hours) throughout the day is not only unhealthy, there’s clear evidence that too much sitting actually negates many of the benefits of exercise.
We spend an average of 10 hours each day, almost ½ the day, sitting. There are clear negative consequences to this. Rates of life-shortening conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis and obesity are highly correlated with increased time spent sitting. People who spend most of their day at desk jobs, irrespective of other factors, tend to have more back issues than those who spend most of the day on their feet. Sitting too much affects your body at the cellular level. Extended periods of sitting can result in increased blood sugar levels, blood pressure and cholesterol. People who spend more time on their feet tend to have lower rates of these and other diseases. And, what’s surprising, is it doesn’t matter if you exercise regularly or not. Too much sitting can ruin a good workout – sitting for extended periods of time can actually reverse the positive effects of an otherwise awesome and health-benefiting exercise.
Standing = Good Health
The mere act of supporting your own weight on your own two legs is extremely beneficial. You burn 2x the amount of calories each minute standing versus sitting; each hour of standing improves your heart rate and the flexibility of your arteries (think … lower blood pressure); and a year of standing versus sitting can mean the difference of more than 10 pounds less of excess body weight. Standing more has also been show to help prevent depressed mood … so stand up, get healthy and and happy!
The Bottom Line_________________________________________
Stand Up. Whether you’re reading a crime report, preparing for COMPSTAT, speaking on the phone or having a one-on-one conversation, do so while standing;
Spend ¼ of Your Day (4 hours) Standing. Afraid you’re going to forget, set a timer or download an app (“Move”, “Stand Up”) to keep you ‘on your feet’;
Walk and Talk. Hold walking meetings when time and circumstances permit;
Adjust Your Desk. Tilt your monitor so you can read from a standing position, use an adjustment desk or reading stand, and stand while you read, speak on the phone or meet;
Leisure Time is Standing Time. At your kid’s game, while waiting for a meeting to start, at the back of a room during training … use these as opportunities to stand rather than sit.