Get Up, Stand Up

One hour a day. A new study suggests that’s all the exercise it might take to offset the harmful effects of sitting for up to eight hours per day.

From U.S. News & World Report:

If you spend all day sitting on your rear end, then you might want to schedule some time for a brisk walk — just make sure you can spare at least an hour.

Scientists analyzing data from more than 1 million people found that it takes about 60 to 75 minutes of “moderate intensity” exercise to undo the damage of sitting for at least eight hours a day. Not exercising and sitting all day is as dangerous as being obese or smoking, they found.

Study co-author Ulf Ekelund, a professor of sport medicine at the Norwegian School of Sports Sciences, told the Washington Post that the one hour of activity could be brisk walking or cycling but said that the exercise doesn’t have to be so rigorous or all at one time. That is, the hour of activity can be spread out over the entire day.
“We did not analyze your data in this way, but all available evidence suggests that the one hour can be done in shorter intervals. My personal opinion is that every single minute of activity counts,” he (Ekelund) said in an email.

Live Science offered a series of tips to help you get up and out of your chair.

  • Instead of sending an email or picking up the phone, get up out of your chair to ask your coworker that pressing question.
  • Instead of sitting down with your cup of Joe, take a few laps around the office.
  • Set an alarm at your computer for around 3 p.m., and when it goes off, get up and go for a walk.
  • Never take the elevator when you can take the stairs.
  • Plan more active things to do than watching television after work.

HealthDay News pointed out that researchers believe the increased risk of early death (among the less active) ranged from 12 percent to 59 percent, depending on how much exercise the participants got.

“Indeed, those belonging to the most active group, and who are active about 60 to 75 minutes per day, seem to have no increased risk of mortality, even if they sit for more than eight hours a day,” researchers said.

“Sit less, move more, and the more you move the better,” they added.

Keeping people active and healthy is a huge priority for us. Because the healthier the people of our state are – the faster we can reach our long term goal of making Arizona the Healthiest State in the Nation!

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