If you’re like most corporate professionals or modern entrepreneurs, it’s likely that you spend a lot of your time sitting and working.
Almost all of the activities we do in our professional career involves 90% sitting – whether it’s taking meetings, answering calls or getting important stuff done on the computer.
… And it’s actually killing you. Recent studies published in the Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise (MSSE) Journal  and The American Journal of Epidemiology  provide further evidence that sitting for long hours is as harmful as smoking.
Both studies have concluded that sitting as an activity for long hours should be avoided by all means.
As a corporate professional or knowledge worker, you are literally confined to your chair for 10 – 12 hours per day. In addition to that, you also spend a couple more hours at home while you relax and watch TV.
… And this is NOT going to change. Companies are not going to change their policies about how people work anytime soon.
It’s up to you… For most corporate companies, you are a replaceable entity. If you aren’t able to get stuff done or drop dead all off a sudden, they will simply find a new person to replace you.
But for your family, you are irreplaceable. Think about your spouse and children. What would happen to them if something were to happen to you?
You may even workout for 1 hour a day, go on a strict diet or do all the things you can do to stay healthy. But if you spend your time sitting 8 – 10 hours a day, all the good things you’ve been doing is going down the drain.
There are some other negatives associated with sitting as well…
– Sitting makes you more lethargic and slows down your metabolism
– People who spend more time sitting are far more likely to be obese
– Sitting leads to increased cortisol levels… thereby leading to stress
– Sitting for long hours negates the effectiveness of your regular cardiovascular and strength training workouts
On the other hand, standing actually has plenty of wonderful benefits associated with it. It engages our largest muscle group (glute and the lats) thereby promoting the distribution of lipases which in turn boosts our metabolism.
Over the last one year, I have been implementing various things to decrease my sitting time and increase my standing time. But mind you – standing for long hours is also as bad as sitting for long hours (which leads to Knee problems)
The only solution is to MOVE regularly and be engaged. Unfortunately, it’s not easy to implement because the nature of work we do is stationary. Therefore, the ideal routine would involve a combo of sitting, standing and movement.
With that said, here are a couple of tips to reduce your sitting time…
A Standing Desk:
There are desks that are available in the market that can be used while standing and sitting. You can increase or decrease the desk’s height at the press of a button and alternate between sitting and standing.
If you aren’t able to find such a desk in your local market, you could adopt my strategy – which involves placing an elevated box on my desk where I can place my laptop and continue working.
Walk When Taking Phone Calls:
Whenever you’re taking phone calls, one of the best things you can do is to walk and talk. Just put on your headset and keep walking. I walk and take any phone call that will take more than 10 minutes of my time.
Do Exercises Every Now And Then:
Make sure that you are taking breaks every one hour or so for at least 5 – 10 minutes. And in these 5 – 10 minutes, instead of grabbing a cookie and having a chat with your buddies, try doing some exercises.
It could be a couple of push ups or a few stretches. Anything that engages your core muscles will help decrease stress and keep you focussed.
Ever since I started reducing my sitting time, I have noticed considerable differences in my physiology.
In the past, my energy levels used to taper down during late afternoon hours. But now, I feel more energetic and focussed.
All in all, I’m incredibly happy that I made this change and strongly recommend that each and every one of you try implementing the methods above. Even if it’s only for a couple of minutes a day, it’s going to be worth the effort.
If you are convinced with my thoughts and are planning to give standing a try, remember that you’ll need to ease into it for about a week before standing becomes more comfortable. Your team members or office collages might make you the butt of jokes but over a period of time, people will get used to it and actually appreciate you.
As with any new habit, do not go overboard because overdoing anything has its own drawbacks.
If you’re having a hard time combatting stress and find yourself literally struggling to lead a healthy lifestyle, go here right now…
I will personally help you eliminate disempowering habits and create a powerful roadmap that will make you healthy and whole again. Go here…
In addition to working with clients 1 on 1, I also engage with corporate teams through my In-Person Group Wellness Sessions. During these sessions, I personally work with teams and help improve their wellness.
If you’re someone in the “Management Position” who is keen to drastically improve your team’s performance, I strongly encourage you to get in touch with me right now. Go here to contact me:
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- Sitting time and mortality from all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19346988)
- Leisure Time Spent Sitting in Relation to Total Mortality in a Prospective Cohort of US Adults (https://aje.oxfordjournals.org/content/172/4/419.abstract?sid=f9aa59b6-438b-482c-a782-315969087e17)