Dec 18 2015
Working in the fitness industry you have to be somewhat of a cynic. There’s always the latest craze, the new fad diet, the new bit of gym equipment or cardio class that’s going to revolutionise your training and your fat loss! Most of the time I’m sorry to say – …
Working in the fitness industry you have to be somewhat of a cynic. There’s always the latest craze, the new fad diet, the new bit of gym equipment or cardio class that’s going to revolutionise your training and your fat loss! Most of the time I’m sorry to say – it’s total BS!
I’m an advocate for hard work – I’ve always recited that there’s no substitute for it…that you have to pay your dues, put in your hours at the gym and quit jumping on the bandwagon of the latest ‘thing’. Success on any such venture is short-lived at best I’d say. The thing is, this time I have a feeling I might be wrong. What I’m talking about is that fat loss (and being healthy for that matter) is actually a lot more basic than that.
Let me set the scene – the typical office worker sits for as much as 13-15 hours a day, and sleeps for the other 8! We sit to eat, we sit to commute, to work….the list goes on. The message – spread by Dr James Levine (a specialist in the obesity inventor of the treadmill desk) – is simple. Move more, sit less.
- People prone to weight gain and obesity are those who stay seated for two and a quarter hours longer each day than those who go to the gym and happen to be lean.
- When you have been sitting for a long period of time and then get up, within 90 seconds of being off your bottom the muscular and cellular systems that process blood sugar, fat (triglycerides), and cholesterol are activated and disease prevention comes into play.
- If you were to stand and pace the length of a room whilst taking calls for 1 ½ hours (versus sitting at your desk and taking the same calls) that would account for roughly an extra 350 calories burned every day, (by rule of thumb that’s a pound of fat burnt per week!)
The Good News
You don’t need to run out and buy the first treadmill desk you find….or refuse to sit down to eat a meal with your family every night for fear of parking your bottom for too long! It starts with just being mindful of your movement ….
- Think about your NEAT
NEAT, or nonexercise activity thermogenesis, is your energy expenditure of activities other than sports. It includes dancing, going to work, gardening, or going for a walk. So you can imagine a construction worker uses a lot more NEAT calories than a computer programmer in the course of a workday. Think of ways you can increase your NEAT – maybe get off the train a stop earlier and walk a little further every evening, take a stroll around the block after lunch – or go and speak to your colleague on another floor (and take the stairs 😉 rather than email him! These little changes all add up to something that can actually be quite significant.
- Ask for a FITBIT this Christmas
Apple watches, FITBITS… I’m sure there are many other gadgets out there that do the same thing – they are a way of making your movement tangible. See how much you do move every day – is it as much as you thought? To give you some perspective, guidelines say you should be walking at least 10,000 steps a day. During the week, I hit 20,000 most days – at the weekends it’s usually a lot less….whereas before I might have avoided that extra stroll to the shops for something I forgot, not I’ll just get on with it and go. Why? Because I know that I need to shift my ass and keeping moving – not only to stay healthy but also to stay lean!
- The best news of all!
Studies have shown that you only need to move at a pace of 1.1km ph for an hour three times per day to induce enough calorie burn to make a difference to your weight. What that means is you can perform the ‘exercise’ without breaking into a sweat – no need to change, shower or faff. I’ve actually got many of my clients to setup an exercise bike in front of the TV. The time that they are mindlessly watching the football, they are also mindlessly turn the pedals on the lowest gear burning fat. There’s no need to find the time to exercise!
Quite simply, most of us are still too sedentary on an hour-by-hour basis. The answer is simple, but it will require a change in thinking and being; a change in how we live, really. And we all have the power to do something—that’s the great part. So I encourage you to start thinking about how you can get more physical movement into your life, each and every hour
When You’re Ready To Get Serious
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