Exercise is essential for staying healthy and thwarting disease. If pirates spent more time on the elliptical, they’d never have gotten scurvy. If FDR spent less time having fireside chats and more time hitting the dumbbells, he’d never have been riddled with polio.
You might think twenty minutes on the treadmill three times a week is sufficient to counteract the abuse of the post grad weekend. But if you’re telling yourself it’s enough exercise, you’re dead wrong. Especially if you’re sitting on your ass all day at work. And this shouldn’t be a shock to you. The simple fact that you’re out of breath getting to your third floor walk up should give that away. But it’s becoming more evident how much exercise you need daily, and interestingly, it’s actually a function of how many hours a day you spend sitting down.
Per Pop Sugar:
The perils of sitting all day aren’t good. Researchers have shown that remaining stationary for extended periods of time (like at your 9-to-5 desk job) can be detrimental to your health. While exercise is a big part of offsetting the harmful effects of sitting, it was unclear how many gym sessions were needed to help — until now.
A new study, published in The Lancet, shows the ideal formula for counteracting the negative effects of a sedentary job. Instead of a fixed number of hours spent exercising, the ratio depends on how much you sit: people who work a typical eight-hour day should spend at least one hour each day moving; if you sit six hours a day, you should spend half an hour exercising. The research also indicated that the exercise doesn’t have to be all at once — or rigorous. It can be spread throughout the day and be as simple as walking.
The team behind the study analyzed data from a pool of a million adults over the age of 45 in Western Europe, the United States, and Australia. Using previous data, the researchers examined data from 16 published studies and used it to determine how much exercise is required to compensate for sitting. Their recommended daily exercise goal is higher than previous advice but not necessarily less attainable, given it can be completed throughout the day.
No word yet on how much exercise you need if you’re lucky enough to get a lie-down desk. I guess that’s a point for those guys like Dave who have a screw loose and are team standing desk. Because really, all this is telling me is if I stand up all day, I’ll never have to work out. It’s not just work day sitting that you’ve got to account for, though; sitting on the couch after work probably counts, right? So that’s easily another four hours. And what am I going to do, just stand in the corner like a serial killer watching TV while my roommates lounge out on the sectional like Prince Akeem and Semmi?
I’m not going to subject myself to that. So it looks like the gym is back in play, and probably I’ll have to push 90 minutes at this point – work sitting plus home sitting – so it’s a good thing I’m finally getting over my fears of joining a new gym.
[via Pop Sugar]
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