As moms, I think it’s easy to forget exactly what our activity level really is.
- Not what we want it to be.
- Not what we dream of having it be.
- Not what it was when we were 20.
- Not how busy we are.
We need to carefully look at what our activity level really is.
I was thinking about this when the doctor asked me what my activity level was. I would never say sedentary (“sofa spud”). I’m a busy woman, after all. I cook, clean, garden, homeschool five kids (well, four kids. one graduated)…I do laundry…I garden…I do all the grocery shopping.
I’m active. Right?
He challenged me to really think about that, and to take note how many hours a day I spend sitting. Ouch.
Busy is Not Active
Busy, sadly, does not mean active lifestyle. Most of us today are busy, but we are not busy in the sense of moving our bodies in a way that benefits them. We are usually rushing around, not working out or otherwise beneficially moving our bodies to promote fitness.
Though I am a full time, stay at home mom, I do work from home, which I am able to do because my kids are all older now and no longer require full time, hands-on assistance. I design websites and I am a freelance writer. These two activities translate to a lot of time sitting on my rear end. Many modern jobs do.
I have tried to add more walking to my day and more activity in general. On nice days I hang out my laundry. I go for walks. I park as far from the door at the store as I can, as I mentioned earlier. These are great starts. In the last month though, I’ve tried to make a concerted effort to not stay seated for longer than an hour at a time. Because I’m drinking so much water, nature seems to make me get up and at least walk to the potty more frequently. .
Strategies for Getting Out of the Chair
To get my sorry self out of the chair more often, I have had to make a conscious effort to do so. It seems a bit silly, but if you don’t decide to do something and focus on making it a habit, you never will.
Here are some things that I’ve found helpful:
- Set a timer for certain intervals. Get up from what you’re doing and do some callethetics, or stretch, or walk around the house with the dog on a leash or a baby in the stroller. Move for about five minutes for every half hour you’re seated.
- Do some normal “Seat work” while standing up somewhere. Sometimes I write while standing at the half wall between our kitchen and dining room.
- If you’re more coordinated than I am, do some computer work while using the treadmill. I’m still working on that one, though I read blogs and watch you tube videos on my Kindle while treadmilling.
- Decide, no matter what, you will go outside (or inside in bad weather only) and do some active activity with your kids every day, for at least fifteen minutes. You may find yourself having so much fun, you move for even longer.
- Set specific hours for computer usage. When it’s up, you’re done. Turn it off. The internet can wait til tomorrow.
- If you work from home, set hours for your business too. Don’t let it consume your life.
Get out of the chair and move!
The Dangers of Sitting
Recent studies have shown that there are dangers to our health if we stay seated for too long throughout the day on a regular basis. If you need some motivation, do a quick web search and get moving.
Do you have a suggestion to add?