When you look at your day, how much of it is spent sitting or being sedentary? For a lot of people the answer to that is most of their day. Many people might find that they spend 8+ hours sitting at work and then come home and sit some more, whether it is to watch TV or for some other sedentary activity. We then go to bed and sleep the rest of the time. That’s a lot of time spent each day being sedentary!
So what can we do that has the biggest impact on our health to help counterbalance all that sedentary activity? Dr. Mike Evans, an Associate Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of Toronto, and a staff physician at St. Michael's Hospital, created a video to help us learn what the best thing we can do for our health.
In looking at several studies that are mentioned in the video, Dr. Evans suggests that exercise is the best medicine. However, his findings keep it somewhat simple: 30 minutes of exercise each day can make a large impact on your health. Even more interesting is that the studies suggest that you can break up your 30 minutes of exercise throughout your day and you will still receive the large health benefits from it. To some of you that may not be new news or it may sound familiar to what you may have read here on the dailySpark or on the SparkPeople Message Boards. That’s right - we believe that small bits of fitness throughout your day add up too.
Being busy and having a hectic schedule doesn’t mean you are destined to an unhealthy life. Making time for 30 minutes in your day to be active/exercise can make a tremendous amount of difference in the way you feel and in your health overall. Even making small changes throughout your day can make a difference. Some of the more simple and small things you can try that do make a difference: taking the stairs instead of the elevator, park your car further away from the store, or be active during TV commercials (or during the whole show). Remember, this does not have to be an all-or-nothing approach, nor do you have to make drastic changes to have a healthy and active lifestyle.
Let’s bust the “lack of time” exercise excuse! As Dr. Evans points out in his video, 30 minutes a day is all it takes to make a big impact on your health. When you look at your day like that, out of 24 hours, we can give ourselves 30 minutes to improve our health, right? I’m willing to find time in my day to exercise for at least 30 minutes to help lower the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, depression and increase my quality of life. How about you?
Below is the very well illustrated video that Dr. Evans created. To view it, please click play or click here.
Can/do you limit your sitting and sleeping to just 23 ½ hours a day (or less)? What tips or suggestions do you have for those that are sedentary for most of the day and need help finding time to exercise?
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