Uninterrupted stretches of sitting may raise your risk of heart disease, diabetes and other serious illnesses. And that appears to be true even if you exercise regularly.
Take a stand today for better health with these tips.
1. Nudge yourself
It’s easy to lose track of time spent sitting. So set an alarm to remind yourself to get up. At least every 90 minutes, stand, stretch and move. More often is even better.
2. Go mobile
Stand up while you talk on the phone. But be aware of your surroundings. Distracted walking and talking put you and others at risk of collisions and injuries.
3. Make specific tasks upstanding
Tie standing to other daily behaviors. For instance, get up whenever you text a friend or fold clothes. Need to pay bills or browse the internet? Use a high countertop where you can stand and work comfortably.
4. Get personal
Do you work in an office? Instead of emailing or calling co-workers, walk over to their workspaces for face-to-face discussions. Better yet, if you’ve got a one-on-one meeting scheduled — and there’s a nearby sidewalk — consider a walking meeting.
5. Don’t let sore feet stand in your way
Make comfortable shoes a priority. And if pain of any kind keeps you from standing regularly, talk with your doctor.
6. Step it up
Track your steps with a fitness tracker. Knowing how many steps you take each day may motivate you to get up and move more. For safety’s sake, talk with your doctor before significantly increasing your activity level.
7. Be a do-it-yourselfer
Drive by the automatic car wash — and scrub your ride yourself. Cut the grass with a push mower. Pass on food delivery — and walk to the corner market instead. You get the idea.
8. Go the distance
Skip escalators and elevators — and make a beeline for the stairs. When your kids play sports, don’t be a sedentary spectator. Walk the sidelines if possible. Every evening, spend a few minutes putting items away that go in other rooms.
9. Find your inner flamingo
For a change of pace, see how long you can stand on one foot. You’ll work your core and leg muscles — and boost your balance.
10. Try a standing desk
Not all work stations lend themselves to standing. But if possible, use an adjustable desk that allows you to spend part of the day on your feet.