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Health Matters: Movement matters

“No time you move is ever a waste of time” ~ Pierre Pozzuto

Exercise – such a simple, yet complicated word! We know we should exercise, but the majority of us don’t. Why is this? One of the big reasons has to do with our attitude about exercise. Do you think exercise is fun or a chore? If you’re in the former category, I’d like to invite you to try something radical – take the word ‘exercise’ out of your vocabulary and replace it with ‘movement’. What happens?

Adding movement into our lives involves making the smallest of changes. To start, have a look at how you spend a typical day. If you are like the majority of Canadians, you spend more than 12 hours of your day sitting. That’s a lot of time! What are some things you can do to chip away at those 12 hours and add movement? Here are some suggestions:

  • Walk around your house/office while talking on the phone
  • Park your car one row further away than what you normally would
  • Incorporate a few stretches you can easily do while sitting (I highly recommend the book Stretching written by Bob Anderson. It’s my “go to” reference!)
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator
  • Walk the hallway or common area while waiting to see your health care practitioner/banker/dentist or even waiting for your car to be serviced or during the intermission at your child/grandchild’s hockey game/piano recital etc. I’ve logged quite a few minutes walking in airport terminals while waiting for my flight to leave
  • Walk down the hall to speak to a co-worker instead of sending an e-mail
  • Try marching on the spot or doing some high knee lifts during commercial breaks while watching television

These small changes really can make a difference! Consider this - if you did 30 seconds of movement every hour for 12 hours of sitting each day that amounts to six minutes a day, 30 minutes a week, 26 hours a year! That’s more than one full day of accumulated activity!  Small changes equal big results. Give it a try!