Inactivity is unhealthy

How will you stay active this week?

Did you know that 3.2 million people die each year because of inactivity?

A sedentary lifestyle, or a commitment to inactivity, according to the World Health Organization, is the fourth leading risk factor for mortality worldwide, with 1 in 4 adults at risk globally. Are you in that number?

When I think about inactivity and all the family and friends in my life who have given up their active lifestyles, it makes this kind of information extremely important to me! There certainly are many people in my life who are happily active, and you can tell by their energy-levels that they love what they do!

Even the most ambitious person can tweak their lifestyle to further step away from too much sitting. We all benefit from shaking up our habits from time to time.

Ten Tips for helping others (and yourself!) release the sedentary or inactivity lifestyle

  1. Instead of inviting friends or adult kids over for a night of dinner and movies, invite them to spend time together with a nice walk around your neighborhood lake or the dog park.
  2. Instead of meeting beloved friends for a cocktail on Thursday, invite them to meet-up for a walk around the Botanical Gardens! Perhaps a glass of wine afterwards will feel just right.
  3. Instead of driving your car to the community mailboxes, throw on a sweater and take a walk. Stop and smell your friend’s roses on the way home.
  4. Instead of sitting in front of the television while your dinner bakes in the oven, grab some canned goods from the pantry and do bicep curls while you march in place.
  5. Instead of going to the gym, turn your home into a obstacle course. Try push ups against the dining room wall. Enjoy leg stretches on the stairs every time you use them. Use light weights to distract yourself every time the neighborhood dogs bark up a storm.
  6. Instead of spending an entire afternoon reading in your cozy chair–oh, forget it–just keep reading!
  7. In addition to reading while sitting, consider using a smart phone so that you can keep up with your favorite author while you take a walk! Here’s a link for free audio books.
  8. Instead of sitting on a stationary bike at the gym, invite a friend to take a class together. Learning new ways to move your body through different planes of motion is important.
  9. Instead of signing up for the bus tour at your next vacation, consider a more active way of visiting the sites. This service will give you some good ideas.
  10. Consider releasing sedentary habits on the job. We all enjoy the convenience of texting our coworker the answer to the question they asked at the staff meeting. How about setting a new standard at work as you walk over to that person and talk to them directly. You know, eye contact and friendly body language. Those are two benefits of living a more active lifestyle!

If everyone dreams up a few fun ways to sneak physical activity into day-to-day living, we can all outlive this newly reported risk factor. Inactivity can be released and new activity lifestyles can be embraced!