For years, we have been told that household chores do not count as exercise. At one point, women were told that children and housework could increase your chance of heart disease. Doctors in Sweden are now challenging those ways of thinking with a new study they released earlier this year. They worked on their study for 15 years and have noted that many folks reduced their chances of heart disease by 24%. This is a significant breakthrough and can be very helpful to those who are overweight, obese, and/or too sedentary.
Good News for Those Who Are Struggling with Their Weight
Those who have gained weight and need to find a way to lose some pounds truly struggle with exercise. We often suggest that they start out slow with a 15 to 20-minute walk at some point in the day. Many heavier people have expressed their anxiety over being seen in public trying to exercise. It is unfortunate that we live in a society who shames people for their size and then shames them for attempting to be healthy. We can now at least suggest household chores in addition to other exercises that can be done inside the home where they can feel safe along their journey!
Changing Our Sedentary Lives
It is estimated that the average American sits from 10-12 hours each day. This is due to the sedentary lives that many of us live, including at work. Those who work labor intensive jobs are at least able to break up monotony in their day, unlike those of us who sit at a desk and computer. It has been shown that those of us who sit for 10.5 hours or more a day are two and a half times likely to die at an early age. People who sit for less than 6.5 hours are more likely to live longer. While office employees may not be able to break up their work day as much to move around, they still should make every effort. Rather than send an email, go to the person’s office and stand during a quick chat. Take a quick walk around the office every so often. Walk during your lunch break and eat at your desk while you work.
For those who work at home, it can be substantially easier to find ways to change our habits. A friend of mine, who works from home, takes breaks in between her assignments. Those assignments can take anywhere from 1-2 hours long each. When she takes a break, she does some mundane chore. Emptying the dishwasher, starting a load of laundry, mopping the bathroom floor. This helps her from sitting for too long, take care of her living environment, and makes her body feel better than it used to.
You Still Need Regular Exercise
The one thing that is important to remember, you still need regular exercise. Take your after-dinner walk, do yardwork on the weekends, go hiking on a sunny afternoon, hit the gym before you go to work, and even doing some yoga to help your flexibility. Housework cannot begin to save our hearts and minds without doing something we find enjoyable and works our muscles. Have you got a tip on how to add a bit of movement to your day? Comment below so that we can share and learn from one another!
One great way for pharmacists to get moving in life is to find a new position, whether it’s a travel position or retail pharmacy position. Pharmacists know that their positions require lots of standing and moving time!