Are you one of those individuals that sits at a desk for several hours a day? New studies show that this could be the new silent killer. The health hazards of sitting for long periods of time are significant even in individuals who work out on a consistent basis. That point was reiterated recently in two studies, published in The British Journal of Sports Medicine and in Diabetologia, a journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes.
You could work out several days a week performing both strength training and cardiovascular exercise and it would not exclude you from the perils of sitting. The research comes more from observing the health results of people’s behavior than from discovering the biological and genetic triggers that may be associated with extended sitting. Scientists have determined that after an hour or more of sitting that the production of enzymes that burn fat decreases by as much as 90 percent. When you sit for extended periods of time, it slows the body’s metabolism of glucose and lowers the level of HDL in the blood. Those risk factors can contribute to developing Type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
The upside to this problem is that it has lead to new developments in office furniture that help combat the problem of sitting for long periods of time. There are several companies with products out in this area. One of the companies I recommend is LifeSpan Fitness. They have developed the Treadmill Desk, which has become one of the hottest things on the market. Companies such as Microsoft, Nike, and other industry leaders are promoting the new idea of workplace wellness. They are using things like the Treadmill Desk and the Bike Desk to help their employees maintain a healthy lifestyle. As our economy continues to suffer and health insurance costs continue to rise for both the employer and employee many companies are looking for ways to reduce the risk factors associated with heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. This is a great way to improve company morale, revitalize stagnant employees who have little or no energy coupled with high stress levels, and reduce health care premiums.
There is also a growing collection of do-it-yourself solutions for stand-up work. Many are posted on Web sites like www.howtogeek.com, and freely shared like recipes. For example, Colin Nederkoorn, chief executive of an e-mail marketing start-up, Customer.io, has posted one such design on his blog. Such setups can cost as little as $30 or even less, if cobbled together with available materials.
Many companies have also started building wellness facilities in house to help provide employees with options for exercise. This can consist of cardiovascular equipment such as treadmills, ellipticals, bikes, rowing machines, stepper, etc. They typically include some free weights, bands, kettlebells, foam rollers, plyometric boxes, and selectorized machines. The company will then have a trainer on staff to supervise exercise classes like circuit classes, yoga, step class, pilates, and other modalities. These companies are leading the way in thinking about how to improve and help your employees succeed and enjoy coming to work everyday. If your company is looking for such a wellness program, have them contact Xcellerated Speed Training to guide them through the entire process from start to finish.