Stealth Fitness: An easy way to fit more movement into your day

I’m thrilled to share this guest post with you from one of my top students, Dr. Brianne Grogan, DPT.  Now that I spend so much time writing and so much less time running around the hospital floors, this is an issue that’s become very important in my own life.  I just read a study yesterday that showed that standing and taking a walk for just five minutes every hour can help to combat the health risks of sitting.  That’s easy enough to do as long as I set a timer.  (I like to make mine 5 minute dance breaks!)

Here’s Dr. Grogan’s brilliant idea for fitting in mini bursts of fitness…

You’re (not) going to want to sit down for this:

“Each hour you spend sitting shaves 21.8 minutes off your life expectancy…” (1)

“For every two hours spent sitting in front of the computer or television, the average person raises his or her risk of colon cancer by 8 percent, of endometrial cancer by 10 percent and of lung cancer by 6 percent.” (2)
“Sitting is the new smoking…”

New research is popping up everywhere about the dangers of sitting all day. Too much sitting affects all areas of our health, from our weight and body composition to heart disease risk, diabetes risk, and even to cancer risk (3). Unfortunately, a single sweat session at the gym just doesn’t cut it (4).

What we need to do is sit less and MOVE MORE throughout the day, every day.

But with our increasingly sedentary lives and jobs, it can be difficult to fit more movement into the day. Unfortunately, some companies frown upon standing workstations and not everyone has access to a treadmill desk. So what’s the solution? Finding stealthy ways to move more… And then remembering to do it.

One great strategy is to attach movement to something you already to multiple times per day, every day. Women may have heard of doing kegels (pelvic floor exercises) every time they’re at a stoplight. The following idea is similar… Because what are you GUARANTEED to do multiple times per day, every day?

Use the restroom.

In this quick video I outline a movement routine that takes one minute (max). No big deal! But if you do it every time you use the restroom, you’ll be adding 40-50 squats to your day, 40-50 push-ups to your day, and 40-50 triceps dips to your day! Think of the benefits: a revved metabolism, a stronger heart, and firmer, more toned muscles WITHOUT extra time at the gym.

Not comfortable with “bathroom fitness?” No problem. Here are some other ideas for fitting more movement into your day:

If you’re in an office, take every excuse to stand up and walk around. Rather than email your co-workers, stand up and walk over to them. Move your body and enjoy social interaction (bonus!).

Home with the kids? Make short walks a part of your daily routine. Walk to park rather than drive. Walk to the store, if it’s close by. Walk in the mall if it’s raining… Or walk in the rain! Kids (and adults alike) love puddle jumping.

Busy cleaning the house? Then clean like you mean it! Dust over, under, and around. Move chairs when you vacuum or sweep.

However you choose to move more, whether via “stealthy” bathroom fitness or extra work around the house, reframe it as extra calories burned and perhaps even extra years to your life!

References:
1) http://www.vox.com/2014/7/2/5862026/sitting-vs-standing-health-risks-dangers
2) http://www.nbcnews.com/health/cancer/heres-just-how-bad-sitting-around-you-n132471
3) http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/page/national/the-health-hazards-of-sitting/750/
4) http://qz.com/223160/why-not-even-exercise-will-undo-the-harm-of-sitting-all-day-and-what-you-can-do-about-it/


Brianne Grogan, DPT | Integrative Pelvic Health InstituteBrianne Grogan is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and the founder of FemFusion Fitness. A healthy foodie, a fitness fanatic, and a passionate advocate for women’s health, Brianne firmly believes that strong, healthy woman are the backbone of a thriving society. She shares her “eat clean, move every day” message via live events, videos and e-courses, and group health coaching programs. Follow Brianne on social media… There’s nothing better than connecting, sharing, and building community! FacebookTwitterPinterest

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