What’s your sitting-number?

Michelle Judd, Sr. Marketing Manager, Global Communications @ Ergotron

Last July, my family and I were sitting in a hospital room, watching my dad slowly recover from a five part bypass surgery. The congestive heart failure took us all by surprise and left me and each of my four siblings with a dark, sneaking thought, How healthy are my own arteries and veins? What do I need to be doing to start living a healthier lifestyle? 

After reading  the post by Gretchen Reynolds of the New York Times, “Phys Ed: The Men Who Stare At Screens,” I instantly forwarded it out to my family and friends. Men, women. We all stare at screens, whether it is the 2 x 4″  mobile one or the 26 to 52″ one. Too much.

The startling statistic she presents? “Men who spent more than 23 hours a week watching TV and sitting in their cars (as passengers or as drivers) had a 64 percent greater chance of dying from heart disease than those who sat for 11 hours a week or less.” Yowsa.

The study published in May in the Journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise that she references, was to examine the relationship between two sedentary behaviors and cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality in men. It doesn’t take a broad leap to think about all the other sitting going on…playing video games, helping the kids with homework, or that 40+ hour work week…it all adds up.

I decided to figure out my daily “sitting” number. Here goes:

Commute: 20 minutes + Daily Meetings: 2 to 4 hours + Writing at my workstation: 2 to 4 hours + Luxury time in evening watching old Bones episodes: 1 hr + Catching up on home email, Twitter, Facebook: 2 hrs = Roughly 7.5 hours+ a day. Yikes. I’m in the “range” too.

On the whole, articles like this are good beacons to the wise. I can’t say for sure that I will miss the same fate as my father (although he is back on his feet, thankfully), but I will sure try. Living healthier involves eating right, emotional balance, stress reduction, exercise, and even some good old work/life balance. Less time on the behind too.

What’s your sitting number?

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