Getting Back In Shape After A Sedentary Lifestyle

Getting Back In Shape After A Sedentary Lifestyle


Welcome to my first post on the wellness niche. I've covered how sedentary people can live a healthy lifestyle. I will give you 25 ways to remain physically active daily, and a weight loss diet for sedentary lifestyle. A bonus, look out for the six health related physical fitness exercises. These are the only ones to undo diseases caused by living a sedentary life.

Sedentary people wouldn't always know health issues they are facing. Living a sedentary lifestyle without knowing what it could do to you, the nagging in the back of our minds sleeps till we decide to get off the couch and do the groove. Yes, I went through that, but it was actually the other people making me realize it. I never understood the importance of exercise till it hit me to be back in shape, and it could for you too. Let me tell you why. Hear my experience.

I have, not a sight but an eye health concern for a few years. I found out after my visit to an ophthalmologist. Other than treatment, she gave me an eye exercise to do and asked if I did any exercises. I told her I didn't, I'm sedentary. She said I needed to hit the gym. She said not yoga but strenuous exercises involving machines of all kinds if I wanted to save my eyes. The motto was to flex, stretch and grip my hands, and muscles of upper body. I was amazed at the treatment.

I had ENT issues for many years. I went to an ENT specialist this year, and found out the issue was not my ear but my nose. Other than the prescription he asked me the same question. And again I thought what did exercise has to do with the nose. And he said I needed to do physical exercises that get my lungs going and me breathless. Whereas the eye specialist prescribed me strenuous, he said I add cardiorespiratory exercises. I left again bewildered, and realized the gravity of the situation.

Sedentary people like me might learn it the hard way to know the importance of exercise. I gave examples to tell you how important it could be to save you from your health issues.

I then joined the gym in 2019 for the first time in my life. I might do a series of posts on the exercises I did there. So let me know if you'd like me to make posts on that. But for now I will talk about all you can do to stay physically fit and active in your everyday life. I would not play a doctor, but what I tried and relate to this post I will tell you all those.

We are more technology bound as time passes by. The ease and stationary entertainment technology provides is restricting our movements. Everything visual is pressurizing our eyes, nerves, and senses. Lockdown got us even more confined within the walls. Now that we can try to get out of that comfort zone we so got used to, and get up from the couch.


How Inactive Lifestyle Affects Your Body

A human body is developed to remain physically active. Short term consequence of a sedentary lifestyle is that you lose muscle mass, strength and endurance. Your bones get weak, causing you to loose mineral content that eventually leads to osteoporosis. Immune system decreases, blood circulation gets poor, ability to break down food gets slower, inflammation increases, and hormonal imbalances occur. You feel sluggish and tired all the time.

After learning how it could affect your body, your first goal now should be to get active. Do the many ways below, and also try if you can follow all or bits of the diet plan given below to feel good too.


Get Un-Sedentary with 25 Health Related Fitness Activities

  1. Get up every 20-40 minutes of sitting, stretch and walk about.
  2. Do gardening, plant, and water your plants to calm your mind and senses.
  3. Do yard works such as shoveling snow or raking leaves.
  4. Play with kids.
  5. Do physical chores that involve body, leg and feet movement. e.g. vacuuming, floor mopping.
  6. Take breaks during TV commercials. Get up and walk a bit, hit the kitchen for water or refilling your food.
  7. Maintain good sitting posture throughout the day. Keep your back straight and don’t hunch, as that would hinder breathing.
  8. Dance to any music you play in your house to get your happy hormone, serotonins up.
  9. Every time you're talking to someone on the phone, use that time to walk.
  10. Walk to the park.
  11. Walk your pet.
  12. Add a short walk after dinner to keep blood sugar level in check and not to develop insulin resistance.
  13. Cycle or walk to the grocery store. 
  14. Jog or run with your loved ones to anywhere.
  15. Take the stairs up as this would get your blood circulation running.
  16. If you can't walk, do chair exercises or pool aerobics.
  17. Do home workout for sedentary lifestyle. Get an aerobics DVD or check some from fitness instructors on YouTube.
  18. Do head tilts side to side and back to ease neck stiffness.
  19. Do stretches and activate your spine muscles. AM and PM, and every time you get up from remaining seated for long.
  20. Do trunk rotations side to side while seated and standing to activate spine and surrounding muscles.
  21. Bend down and touch opposite toes to stimulate muscles around hip and spine.
  22. Do side lateral bends. Without bending forward, do side bends and reach the knee with your hands to stimulate shoulder, neck and mid-section muscles.
  23. Do heel raises, stand on your toes and lift yourself up 10-20 times daily.
  24. Do pushups against any table height, kitchen island, bed or sofa.
  25. See if you can buy a fitness tracker. It would remind you to remain active. If a Fitbit is not in your priorities, download a health tracker app on your smartphone to measure daily calories, steps, heart rate, blood sugar etc.


Best Diet for Sedentary Lifestyle

Sometimes you are sedentary without choice on days, such as when you are bedridden or the lockdown. So you need to eat healthy. It is the same typical healthy diet plan you have already heard of from everywhere. But there is a reason to it. You could gain pounds being sedentary and over eating, and your cholesterol level could get high. If you eat too much sugary foods, your sugar level could peak calling for insulin response. And when that insulin cleans up your blood you could again get more sweet triggers. So first of, get your diet plan made by a nutritionist. I can't emphasize this enough. You'd thank me later. You follow it whenever, at least you'd have it with you. Following a healthy diet plan would make you feel good, and even reduce your medicine volume especially those to do with liver and colon. If you’re looking for a weight loss diet for sedentary lifestyle, this would again apply. You can increase or decrease the amount as per your choice.

You need a diet that fills up your stomach, provides high nutrition, while also promising steady and necessary level of sugar. The diet should be high in nutrition and fiber, and low in calories. Do these;

  • Have daily intake of fruits, vegetables, and all plant based diet. These are high in nutrition and fiber, and would keep you full.
  • Have lean proteins and healthy fats like chicken, turkey, lean meat, and seafood. Choose grilling or broiling for healthy meat cooking practice. Essential fatty acids and Omega-3 from seafood would also help lowering cholesterol level.
  • Eat Whole grains high in fiber. Have oatmeal, barley, granola, whole grain breads, whole wheat pasta, and brown rice.
  • Spice up your diet plan with seasonings. Include olive oil, lemon, cinnamon, vinegar, herbs, and salt and pepper. Don't forget nuts and dried fruits. Psst, something can always be mixed with your food if you're not too worried about calories and gaining weight. What I do is when I fix myself steamy vegetables, I squeeze half a lemon, add a teaspoon of melted butter, and some salt and pepper. It tastes so delicious that I easily empty two bowls in one go.
  • Have low fat dairy and healthy sugars in your diet such as yogurt, cottage cheese, honey, brown sugar.
  • Look out for the red flags. That's right, the power engine of your body - the carbohydrate fuel! Avoid refined carbs, also known as empty calories. As they are processed, they are stripped of vitamins and minerals, white flour, white rice, and refined sugar, for instance. And items of them like cakes, cookies, white bread, pasta, and commercially produced snacks, fast food, and soda.
  • Avoid all processed foods including meat.
  • Reduce your salt intake. You need to reduce the risk of high blood pressure and water retention.
  • Watch out your daily calorie intake. As a rule, minimum intake should be 1200 calories per day according to studies. So don't starve yourself out over fear of following a diet plan. A little bit of other foods is fine as long as you're conscious about living a lifestyle with healthy eating habits.


Six Negative Effects of a Physically Inactive Lifestyle

Inactive lifestyle risks you to six major health concerns.

  1. Cardiovascular diseases, 
  2. Type 2 diabetes, 
  3. Osteoporosis, 
  4. Obesity, 
  5. Deteriorating mental health, 
  6. Increasing risk of premature death.  

This is where health related physical fitness comes in, to reverse adverse effects of living a sedentary lifestyle.


Health Related Physical Fitness Components

Health related physical fitness in general, relates to disease prevention and functional health. Physical fitness determines how efficiently you perform physical tasks and day to day functions. Following regular health related fitness controls weight, prevents chronic disease, boosts energy, improves motor coordination and stress management, and promotes better sleep.

There are eleven components to physical fitness. Out of those, six are health related, and five are skill related. Skill related components are balance, coordination, agility, speed, and reaction time. Getting back to the topic at hand, we are focusing on the six health related physical fitness components i.e. cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular endurance, body composition, flexibility, strength, and power. Let's see each in detail;

Health related physical fitness in general, relates to disease prevention and functional health. Physical fitness determines how efficiently you perform physical tasks and day to day functions. Following regular health related fitness controls weight, prevents chronic disease, boosts energy, improves motor coordination and stress management, and promotes better sleep.

There are eleven components to physical fitness. Out of those, six are health related, and five are skill related. Skill related components are balance, coordination, agility, speed, and reaction time. Getting back to the topic at hand, we are focusing on the six health related physical fitness components i.e. cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular endurance, body composition, flexibility, strength, and power. Let's see each in detail;

  1. Cardiorespiratory endurance: is the ability of your heart and lungs to function continuously. It involves exercising your whole body, giving you efficient heart and lung health, and improved breathing.  These exercises reduce risk of death caused by cardiovascular diseases. This includes aerobic exercises such as walking, jogging, running, and swimming.
  2. Strength: is the maximum force your muscles can produce in a single effort. If you have muscular strength, you can lift heavy objects. This includes muscle resistance exercises that aim to reduce osteoporosis, like weightlifting, planks, side planks, squats, and bridges.
  3. Muscular endurance: is the length of time you use muscles without getting fatigued i.e. for how long can you lift a heavy object. Muscular endurance exercises are football, tennis, push-ups, and crunches curl ups.
  4. Flexibility: Ability to use joints to full range of motion without injury. Having long joints allow your muscles to work more efficiently. This includes stretches, yoga, gymnastics, and dancing.
  5. Power: is the ability to use full strength swiftly, also known as explosive strength. It includes exercises such as long jumps, speed swimming, and sprint.
  6. Body composition: is a term used to measure percentage of fat, muscle, and bone in your body. It tells a healthy weight for your body to reduce risk of obesity related diseases. This includes tests like body mass index (BMI), and Skinfold test. According to studies, a normal and average BMI range is approximately 18 to 25.


You would have noticed I emphasized walking in the whole post and might be wondering why. Well, here is to know why running and especially walking is important to undo sedentary side effects.

Benefits of Walking Everyday

Walking stimulates, resets, and connects your whole body, muscles, and brain. It reverses peripheral artery damage that sitting causes your legs. You don't need to buy a treadmill only to walk. Go outside in the open, and walk with an upright posture. Keep your hands free from objects and get your arms going. Get fresh air at night and sunlight vitamin D during the day.

 

Verdict

A major cause to a sedentary lifestyle is that most of the people have desk jobs. Once they go home they also sit the rest of the day. So your goal should be to get up to gradually increase your daily physical activity. Get conscious if you want to live a healthy lifestyle. Maintain 30 minutes of moderate exercise at least five days a week. Eat a healthy diet. Target a healthy body weight. Quit smoking, and reduce daily alcohol intake. If you do all these, you have a great life expectancy. But if you follow even two or three out of those, you considerably increase your lifespan. 

Start off with aerobic exercises such as walking, bicycling, jogging, running, and swimming. This is the basic, the essential, and the major to reverse your sedentary consequences.

Prevent your diseases instead of treating them later. Walk!



That's all for now. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section below. Don't forget to subscribe to be notified of my upcoming content.

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Isa A

Blogger's Critic on the best in fashion, beauty, and lifestyle.

48 comments:

  1. Great post! Before lockdown I was in the best shape of my life but then did absolutely nothing for a year and a half. And I'm terrible for sitting at my work desk for hours on end without getting up and moving around. I'm back to the gym now and feeling much better now!

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    1. yea. When i joined the gym all my back pain even left my conscious memory. it is. thanks for reading Vourneen. <3

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  2. I'm so glad walking is so beneficial as I love to do it out and about in nature as this doubles up to help my mental health. I have fallen out of a good exercise routine lately so this was an excellent reminder about the things I can do. Thanks for this!

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    1. yea and even picking a few of choice helps too. i'm glad you found it helpful. <3

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  3. Thanks for the tips. I definitely need to suggest gardening to a friend. I love non-gym related physical activity! Hope you are well now. I actually would never have thought an ophthalmologist would suggest gymming would help eyes as well. Our bodies are so connected!

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    1. i am surprised till this date. not so much for ENT but for ophthalmologist. I never would have thought too. And thanks a lot for everything and reading this. <3

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  4. This is such a great list. I do some of these but not near enough. I love them because they really are simple to follow and don't require much effort.

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    1. yea that's the best part, and because of that a good motivation too. thanks for reading Angasa. <3

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  5. I’ve been getting back into exercising and even just going for a walk makes such a big difference. There are so many activities that we can do to get our bodies moving and they don’t have to be too strenuous. And you are 1000% correct, prevention is key! Thank you for sharing this informative and detailed post!

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    1. thank you so much for such a great review. <3

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  6. I am very much aware that I should move a lot more, but I don't have a garden to start with and also have a lot of pain issues, which makes it hard to do anything at times. If I can't go out, I do walk around the table at times to get some movement :)

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    1. ohhh, Renata I didn't know that. I wish you ease my darl. <3

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  7. It’s actually really easy to get up and move and stretch, yet I almost never do it. I am better about it working from home though as I get up to switch laundry or let the dog out…
    It’s the cardio that I REALLY need to start incorporating.

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    1. I'm glad it helped. Thanks for visiting my page and reading this. Can you please give me your link so i can see it? <3

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  8. Great post. I haven’t been exercising as much lately but I’m still active. However, this is a reminder for me to start exercising even if I am at home. Thanks for sharing

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    1. i'm glad you liked it and thanks for reading. Can you link me your page so I can see it? <3

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  9. Fab post. Thanks for highlighting these fitness activities which can be done easily.

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    1. i'm glad you liked it. Thanks for visiting my page and reading this. Can you link me your page so i can see it? <3

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  10. Great tips! I do walking and stretching but every couple of hours because I have work to do. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. thanks for liking it and reading Fransic. I appreciate it. <3

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  11. I really needed to read this. After work I find it so difficult to be motivated, especially in the winter months but small changes can make such a difference.

    https://overtherhinestonerainbow.blog/

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    1. yea. small changes even if started out at home. thanks a lot for visiting my page and reading this. <3

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  12. I need to follow this advice! I am an active person but I have a very sedentary job- so I need to push myself to stay active after hours of sitting still. I love these ideas x

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    1. i'm glad you liked it Eleanor. thanks for reading. <3

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  13. I love getting up and away from my desk, even just for ten minutes. I like to go for daily walks and do lots of desk stretching, it always makes me feel better!
    Rosie

    https://www.loverosiee.co.uk

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    1. that is such a conscious act. i love it. Thanks for reading. <3

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  14. This is a very helpful post! I'm always on my laptop so make sure I go to the gym most days and get out and about xx

    ReplyDelete
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    1. oh you go to the gym. that's nice to hear. thanks for reading. <3

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  15. Great post! You covered an issue that is so relevant very well. I have come to recognize since graduating from college that I am more sedentary and started to workout more but the pandemic set me back again. I'm trying to get more active again and do what I can. Movement is life!

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    1. oh definitely it is! thanks for visiting my page and reading this. <3

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  16. Love all these tips! Sometimes I forget to get up and go for a stretch while working, but going for a walk with the dogs usually helps and should also get back into workout. When the first lockdown hit I started and then left it off! Thanks for sharing x

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    1. i hope we all resume our pre covid lives soon. thanks for reading. <3

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  17. This was a really informative post! I used to do pilates before covid. Then I would walk 5 km a day. Lately I have stopped even this. I should start again cause I already feel the impact of it on my mind, my mood, my body. Thank you for sharing this post! 🙂

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    1. 5km sounds great Eri. thanks for reading! <3

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  18. I haven’t joined a gym, but I recently downloaded a fitness app which helps me to stay fit and workout daily. I also had to learn the hard way the importance of physical exercise

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    1. ohh, i hope things are better with you now. thanks for visiting my page and reading this Riyah! <3

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  19. I personally love going to the gym with someone. It makes us more fun and enjoyable when you go with someone. The benefits of working out is great.

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    1. i went there alone i remember. but that option also sounds nice. thanks for reading. <3

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  20. WOW this is packed with such important information. As soon as I started working from home I realized how much I stopped moving compared to when I was in office moving between meetings all the time. For me it was important to build in alarms to my day to get up and stretch as well as go on a walk at night. Thanks for sharing this, I'll definitely be referring back to this post.

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    1. thank you so much Alex! I'm so glad you liked it. <3

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  21. I do tend to slump over my computer so the reminder to sit up straight hits home for me. I've stepped up my exercise this summer and feel far better for it. Thanks for the excellent tips!

    Sue
    www.susanberkkoch.com/blog

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    1. thanks a lot Sue, and knowing about your current routine getting better. <3

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  22. I love the idea of walking while you're on the phone with someone - that's such a good tip!

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    1. haha. Glad you liked it. thanks for reading <3

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  23. Really interesting. I live about forty minutes walk from my work and trying to gain the motivation to walk to or from, or both. This article has made me think again that I really need to start. Thank you xx
    https://overtherhinestonerainbow.blog/

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    1. i'm glad it could help. Thanks for visiting my page and reading this. <3

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  24. I like your achievable tips such as walk around when on the phone.

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    Replies
    1. yea. No point pursuing unachievable ones when it comes to health. Thanks for reading Jamie! xx

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