BY TAMMY TOOR
One thing that really interests me is learning about health studies. They can range from the latest findings on a particular diet to the results of a certain health treatment.
One particular interest in this regard is how exercise affects our overall health. A couple of years ago, I heard a health professional adamantly profess how inactivity has similar effects on the health of our body as smoking. That made me think because I have a desk job, and I can sit up to seven hours in a day if I am not mindful of it. It also got me looking for ways I can make changes to move more and sit less. Maybe some of my endeavours to move more can benefit you.
I now get up at regular intervals to either stand at my desk or go for a quick stroll. I am fortunate to have a sit/stand desk, so I usually start my day standing and then schedule different times to stand throughout the day.
I look for ways to walk to accomplish tasks. This means walking to the printer, to give a message to a co-worker or to the farthest washroom in the building so that I get some extra steps in.
I book exercise times in my calendar so that meetings don’t conflict. I have an unpaid lunch hour, so I use that time to move. It can be a walk in the park, a boot camp-style workout or even a bike ride. To be honest, I feel that taking that time to exercise is a ‘reset’ switch for me. When I get back to my desk, my mind is clear and I am ready to tackle my afternoon projects.
I try and get co-workers to join me during lunchtime exercise. It can be easy to fill that time with other priorities, but when I have committed to working out with a co-worker, I am certain not to bail.
I have set fitness contests with friends and families. One example is seeing who can accomplish getting 10,000 steps a day for the longest duration. Another is doing a squat challenge with co-workers. It’s amazing how effective a little competition can be.
Looking for ideas on moving more? Pick up a copy of our fall and winter activity guide, visit our website at www.nanaimo.ca or call one of our recreation experts at 250-756-5200.
Tammy Toor is a communications and graphics specialist with the City of Nanaimo’s parks and rec department.