One-Day Movement Plan
From the time you are driving to work, or sitting on transportation, staying at your chair in the office or sitting on your couch when you relax after work, sitting is taking up most of our daytime and it’s having really adverse effects on our health.
Gavin Bradley is the Founding Director of Get Britain Standing, a dynamic campaign run by Active Working C.I.C to educate the public and employers on the health risks of prolonged sitting. The Campaign is growing rapidly and is now running in USA, Canada, Australia and there are plans to expand within Europe.
“Multiple researches show that prolonged and excessive sitting at work is impacting health, wellbeing and productivity of employees. Sitting is such important ball that we have dropped. We've known more or less for 50 years that sitting has had an impact on health. What’s more physical activity exercise for an hour or so per day can’t undo the negative effects of sitting for eight hours; any more than running a mile can’t erase the damage caused by a smoking habit. It's a matter of seeing standing as your default position as opposed to sitting as your default position”, defends Gavin Bradley.
Sitting for too long has been related to weight gain, type 2 diabetes and to a higher risk of developing cancer or heart disease. In a study published in The Journal of Physiology researchers found the activity of the fat-busting enzyme Lipoprotein Lipase (LPL) decreases as inactivity rises. Just the act of standing-up helped reactivate the enzyme’s performance. To avoid the damage and prevent sitting down from robbing you of quality and length of life, you need to break a few bad habits. To help you, we’ve got a plan.
At its heart, the plan is simple: be sure to move. Even the slightest movement with no effort involved, will be enough to kick-start your system and halt the harm of inactivity.
“The primary focus has to be reducing our sitting time – especially at work. Office workers spend on average 10 hours a day sitting, and 70% of sitting time is in the office. So it all starts with assessing your Sitting Calculator just as you assess your daily calories, weekly exercise and alcohol consumption, we now need to assess and reduce where possible our sitting time. The benefits are huge and business is now learning more about the amazing benefits or something that is relatively simple”, explains Gavin Bradley.
1. Do your test: - “Sitting Calculator” - CLICK HERE.
2. Choose movement
Make sure you use all the physical activity opportunities that present themselves during your day. Need to go up or down? Take the stairs, not the lift. Have to endure a long telephone or conference call? Stand and walk as you talk. Scheduling a meeting? Make it a stand up meeting, to give your colleagues the same benefits.
These small habits will actually increase your energy, promote weight balance and overall health (as you’ll also be decompressing the organs and muscles that become compressed as you sit). Many tips, but how to begin?
2. Set a reminder
Set your alarm (you can use an app, laptop or mobile) to warn you it’s time to move every 30 seconds. In that period, walk, stretch and do small exercises that ensure you change position.
Overall, follow this plan for an eight hour work period and you can expect to reduce hours of sitting.
4. Desk break exercises:
• Stand up from your desk and squat. Repeat 5 – 10 times.
• Rotate pelvis from right to left and back looking over your shoulders. Repeat 5 – 10 times.
• Stretch your arms and bend forward (touch your toes) and back (aim for the
celling). Repeat 5-10 times.
Break time suggestions:
• Use the stairs (sprint upwards)
• Take a stroll around the office at lunch time
• Go to your club for a speedy workout
5. Outside work hours:
Combine these habits with more serious exercise. Taking two to three hours a week to enjoy a class or exercise in the gym at your club will boost your wellbeing, as well as improving your resistance and strength.
This will balance the sitting you’re forced to do, with the activity you need to be healthy.