Simply More (TM) – Not Hardcore!
You’ve seen them on the street, in the mall, at a restaurant, in the grocery store – or even in your own home. They could be friends, family or – even – YOU! Who?
They are the 80% of the population that just doesn’t particpate in the “fitness” game. Every age or condition, every personality and demographic has the 80% that choose “sedentary.” While a fitness club, YMCA, gym or workplace wellness coach might offer well-planned programs, group, circuit, or “just for you” programs, the “sedentaries” resist.
Well, in the world of physical activity (PA), good things come to those who wait. the “good thing” is as exciting as it is paradigm-shattering. the “good thing” is WELLNESS. No need to try to prove that physical activity is the first step to prevention when it comes to the most costly and debilitating conditions – the jury is in: Physical Activity is the number one prescription for wellness.
Just standing may be an important component of wellness. A recent study showed that compared to lean women, obese women sat more and stood less. They also spent half as much time moving around as the lean women. Still, the researchers calculated that if the obese women sat less, stood more, and doubled their weekly activity time, they could burn about 315 more calories a day. What does that tell us? “Simply more” physical activity is enough for the 80% who move very little.
How can this be? One answer is obvious. Your body burns more calories standing than sitting. One-third more to be exact. That’s because the large muscles in your legs and back are fighting gravity to keep you standing erect.
Less obvious but implied by this study, is that people who stood more also moved more. Perhaps the saying, “You have to walk before you run” should be adapted to, “You have to stand before you walk.” Look out you 10,000 step programs – we have to get the people off the couch and out of the chair as a “ground zero” initiative.
A third intriguing explanation has to do with fat-burning enzymes that naturally occur in your body. According to new research from the University of Missouri-Columbia, when you sit, these enzymes seem to shut off. This prevents stored fat from being put into the blood stream to be used as an energy source. The research also seems to indicate that when you are seated, fat that is already in the blood stream prefers to be stored in the fat tissue instead of being burned by muscle.
For the 80% of the population that is not active enough to prtect themselves for quality of life-threatening conditions, they can do well if they stand up more.
So how would one build a wellness initiative for healthy community development based on standing, simply moving more and quantifying that? It take more than a clever “Stand Up and be Well” prgram! At HCD we apply our seven-component Wellness Resource Network design system to what you already offer, where you want to be and who you want to reach. Our Resources are delivered only as needed to fill the gaps between where you are and where you want to be for the most sedentary and those most in need of a wellness habit-change.