New Exercise Recommendations Encourage Movement Throughout the Day
New studies can be confusing and annoying. Just when you've accepted the latest fitness or nutritional advice and worked it into your routine, you find that advice wasn't quite right.
Right now, we are seeing a subtle shift in advice concerning "gym time." The focus used to be very carefully concentrated on pushing us all to get to the gym and log a certain amount of time there, working on both cardiovascular machines and muscle strengthening machines.
Now we are finally recognizing that lots of people don't like going to the gym, and they don't have to hop on the treadmill to get good exercise. Helping people understand that exercise can be accomplished in a variety of ways, some while engaging in activities that they actually like to do, obviously leads to much better compliance.
And, to complicate things, The Wall Street Journal recently ran a provocative story about the ill effects of our sedentary lifestyles. Citing an Australian study, the Journal reported that time watching television is linked to death.
Even those who regularly exercised had an increased chance of death when they logged as little as 2 hours of daily tube time. The Australian scientists assert that we must address our sedentary lives not just by working out at the gym, but by increasing physical activity throughout the day. The human body, it seems, was designed to move not just for an hour a day, but consistently. Walking, stretching, reaching, squating, balancing, are all activities that should take place throughout each and every day.
So what should you do?
Continue to exercise. Go to the gym if you love it. If you don't, find alternative ways to exercise. But, begin to be mindful of your overall activity. Do you come home from a great workout and plunk yourself on the couch for the rest of the evening? Do you watch television all weekend long? In addition to your focused workout routine, begin to build more movement into your day. Get up from your desk at work. Walk on your lunch break. Avoid marathon television sessions. Try to keep in mind that your body was designed to move, not to sit. According to the latest findings, your body will reward you for moving it.