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Sitting is the New Smoking

You may have heard this saying before. But why? Chances are you are probably sitting down more than you realize. Did you know that prolonged sitting can cause many chronic health issues? Too much sitting can be the culprit of increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, and unhealthy cholesterol levels – all of which can increase the risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer.

So, it’s time to get off the couch or take a much-deserved break during your day to get active. Here are some simple reminders to help you move and get your body in motion.

Think Small
Don’t worry, you don’t have to commit to running a marathon just yet! Just having the thought and making the first step towards an active lifestyle is a move in the right direction. Start with small goals like committing to taking a ten-minute walk at lunch and work your way up towards more challenging ones.

Find What You Love
The less you enjoy it, the less you’ll want to participate in physical activities. It’s okay to test out different types of activities until you find something that works for you – and then when you do find it, remember to gently ease yourself into it. Dance it out to your favorite playlist, hike up a new path in your local park, or sign up for those classes at your local yoga studio. Get out there, try different things, find what you love, and stick to it!

Whether it is to yourself or with a partner, friend, or even a coworker, become accountable to make a conscious effort to exercise. Take that walk around the block on your lunch break or dust off those hand weights sitting in your basement, and help each other get motivated to move.

Pro-tip: Create calendar events for your workouts and physical activities. You’re more likely to stick with it if it’s already scheduled into your day.

Daily Movement
It might seem mundane, but exercise can be anything but dull. Skip the elevator or escalator and opt for the stairs at work, the doctor’s office building, or at the mall doing your holiday shopping; park further away in the parking lot the next time you go grocery shopping or perform simple stretches while you are waiting for your morning coffee to brew. Make easeful movements part of your daily habit.

Embrace Technology
Be it a watch timer, a fitness app, or even an online fitness program – use technology to your advantage. Track your progress, stay engaged, and increase your movement as you start to feel comfortable.

And remember – just taking the first step is a huge accomplishment. Be proud of all of your efforts and get creative with your movement – your body will thank you!