Yes, that means your household chores, family care and commute.
Everyone knows that they need to exercise to stay healthy. The CDC recommends you get 150 minutes of physical activity a week — which comes out to about 30 minutes a day, five days a week. Now, if you have long work days, have a family to take care of, or don't exactly know where to begin, that can seem like a lot of structured fitness.
But even with your busy lifestyle, you could be doing things that already count as physical activity! Yes, that means your household chores, family care and commute. The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute says you can get a moderate-intensity work out and reduce your sedentary time by washing and waxing a car for 45–60 minutes; washing windows, floors, etc for 45–60 minutes; gardening for 30–45 minutes; pushing a stroller 1.5 miles in 30 minutes; or shoveling snow for 15 minutes.
Other activities that count as exercise:
- Wheeling yourself in your wheelchair
- Raking leaves
- Walking the stairs
Reducing sedentary time is as essential for good health as getting exercise. According to the American Heart Association, even if you fit in 60 minutes of exercise a day, sitting for six to eight hours daily (that's the U.S. average) is dangerous for your heart and longevity.
Other cool ways to stop sitting so much: Walk and talk when you're on your phone. Set a stand-up alarm for every hour, stretch, walk. See if colleagues will go for walking meetings! Your goal: reduce daily sitting time by around two hours.
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