Sedentary To Active: Revitalize Your Life By Prioritizing Regular Movement

  • General Health
  • excercise - movement
  • November 21, 2023

Staying active can improve health, prevent disease, and boost mood. Prioritize regular movement with enjoyable exercise and a schedule.

Extending Your Healthspan

Many Americans who work from have an increasingly sedentary lifestyle. People who work from home often take short naps during the day, graze on low-nutritional value snacks and sit in front of a screen for multiple hours at a time. Although some downtime is necessary, most Americans walk less than 2 miles per day which is barely 3,000 steps. Regardless of age or current fitness status, prioritizing movement is possible with small changes and a commitment to a daily routine.


Walking is exercise

Regular physical activity is an integral part of life. Simply walking more will help burn calories and build muscle, improving health from all aspects. Consistently working out can reduce the risk of diseases like stroke, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure (BP) and metabolic syndrome. Movement can also boost energy and improve sleep. People who engage in physical activity routinely also report better moods and decreased rates of depression and anxiety.

Be patient

Expecting to go from couch potato to marathon runner overnight is unrealistic. Instead, start slow, and integrate small movements throughout the day. Take the stairs instead of the elevator whenever possible. Go for a 10-15 minute walk during lunch instead of sitting at the desk. Walk to the corner store or local coffee shop instead of driving. Even cleaning and gardening can burn a few calories and activate essential muscles.

Find an enjoyable activity

Do something fun. If the activity is something that’s painful or unpleasant, the activity will never progress to a routine. The easiest way to always be active is to get a dog. Rain or shine, a dog needs to go outside to walk and must have exercise to thrive. Throwing a ball in the park is a fantastic way to get sunshine and exercise at the same time. Recent studies have shown a 65% decrease in mortality among people with heart disease. Playing with a dog or cat can elevate serotonin and dopamine levels, which helps with stress and anxiety. If a pet is not an option, gardening is an excellent way to get exercise and enjoyment daily. Gardening has been shown to increase longevity in many populations.

Stick with it

Although any movement is better than nothing, sticking with an exercise routine long-term will result in the most significant physical and mental benefits. Adults should aim for 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity and 2 days of muscle-strengthening activity weekly. Schedule classes ahead of time to ensure this goal is met, or use a smartphone app to track fitness progress. Some people do better with an early morning workout, while others like to participate at the end of the day. Find what works and stick with the plan for the best results.

Activate your life

A busy life is the standard for most people, but that doesn’t mean exercise has to fall by the wayside. Half an hour is only 2% of the day and can be broken up into 15 minute segments. Integrate small movements throughout the day and look for a workout that is fun to perform. Find a workout buddy and an ideal time for exercise to fully commit. Even for currently sedentary people, a healthy and active life is possible.

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