Seated Nation

Today’s lifestyles promote sedentary behavior. Between driving to and from work, typing at our desks, communicating electronically, and even ordering take–out for dinner, few daily responsibilities can’t be accomplished from a seated position. But all that sitting is wreaking havoc on our health, from back injuries to poor circulation to obesity.

And while you might be working out every day, studies show that inertia takes its toll — despite segments of physical activity. Get moving with subtle changes throughout the day to foster a more active existence:

  • Stand up. By getting off your bum and planting your feet firmly on the ground, you can burn upward of 50 more calories/hour than staying glued to your chair. The phenomenon is known as Non Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT): low–exertion movements like fidgeting or shivering that burn energy. Plus, standing promotes clarity and takes pressure off your compressed spine.
  • Pace. It might look like a nervous habit, but pacing has its benefits. Not only will you up your metabolic rate, you’ll draw inspiration when you’re mentally clogged. Use delays like waiting for your restaurant table or for an appointment to walk back and forth.
  • Bop along. Turn up those tunes and tap your feet or bounce in synch. You’ll engage the NEAT processes and shake out your legs at the same time.

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