How beautiful is this?!
(Photo Source: http://sites.tufts.edu/tuftslcs/special-olympics/)
Last week, the U.S. Department of Education declared that all schools must permit disabled children to participate in school sports. Promoting physical activity is supposed to be even more beneficial for disabled persons, since it helps balance out an otherwise sedentary lifestyle. We have all heard that being sedentary is dangerous, but is it really that bad?
Apparently, sitting down for over four hours a day is way scarier than the monster in your closet or your boyfriend’s crazy ex (I know, shocking). Your metabolic system slows down when you sit for an extended period of time, and your circulation slows down, which means you are burning fewer calories (you’re getting plumper, yay!). As if this wasn’t enough, your fat-burning enzymes stop breaking down triglycerides (fat), and you lose 50% of your body’s fat burning power. Yikes!
You also use less blood sugar, increasing your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and even depression. Not fun!
(A little dramatic, but it gets the point across.
Apparently, even exercising for thirty minutes every day is not enough to combat these malicious outcomes. So how do you avoid all of this?
Yes, you read me right. Throw out all of the memories of your teacher yelling at you to “SIT STILL!” and fidget. I know I naturally bounce my heel when I’m sitting at my desk, constantly get up and down to refill my water bottle, and ROCK OUT when I’m at a stoplight (okay, TMI). Seriously though, the Mayo Clinic’s experiments have shown that lean people avoid sedentary lifestyles, and they tend to burn 350 more calories a day than overweight people do. That is about the equivalent of one cheeseburger (yeah!).
If you feel like you’re in an environment where fidgeting is not acceptable (which stinks!), try to stand up every half hour or do stretches when you can. If you have any stationary exercise equipment in your house, such as a treadmill, indoor bike, or elliptical, put it in from of the TV and keep moving while you receive your daily dose of mind numbing trash (no offense).
Alright, I’ve been sitting down too long to write this! Better get moving before I have to sit down for Chemistry (I feel depressed already…).
HandiCAPABLE people have fought for this, let’s all enjoy it!