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Do you sit in front of a computer all day at work? According to the British Journal of Sports Medicine, long periods of inactivity are now being linked to serious health conditions, even in people who regularly exercise.
The study, conducted in Australia, showed that a sedentary lifestyle — described as sitting for prolonged periods of time during waking hours, such as desk work, long-distance drives or extended leisure time —could have serious health effects, particularly in women. These adverse effects include a higher propensity for breast cancer, weight gain and metabolic syndrome, which could lead to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
The solution? Move more by fitting small bursts of activity into your day. Consider taking a short walk every few hours, doing yoga at your workplace or sending your next report to the printer way across the office.
Even better, try Oxygen’s quick list of exercises that you can do to get your blood pumping:
Take the stairs
Walk the stairs in your office for three sets (one set equals a full walk up, and then back down).
Lunch fitness classes
Take advantage of lunch-hour fitness classes at your workplace or a nearby local gym. This is a great way to break up your day and re-energize your mind.
Organize a lunchtime walking or running club with a small group of coworkers. Include a few sets of plyometrics in the park.
Whether it’s during every television commercial or every time the phone rings at the office, have a cue that helps you remember to get up and move around. Think of it as a fitness-inspired Pavlovian response.
Walk it out
If you’re on a long road trip, try to pull over (when it’s safe, of course) at least once an hour to stretch your muscles and activate circulation.