We are all slaves chained to our desks, and this slavery is costing us our health.
As a kid, we all learned “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” but somehow forgot as we grew up.
With a heavy workload and ambitious targets to achieve, we have hardly any time to look away from our screens. Some of us are so busy that we don’t even have time to get up from our seats. We even have our lunch at our desks to hope that all this hard work will manifest into bigger paychecks and promotions.
Sure our desk job with long sitting hours pays the bills, but at the expense of our health. Every day we find a new body part hurting, thanks to our sedentary lifestyle.
If you are often complaining about back pain and stiff neck, you have long sitting hours at work to blame. You may not be aware of this, but you only invite diseases and health issues by sitting at your desk for long hours.
Few people realize long sitting hours are the root cause of their physical and mental health problems. If not the root cause, it acts as a catalyst in making our health issues worse.
Many research studies have linked sitting for long hours with health concerns like obesity, cancer, and increased blood pressure. No wonder sitting is the new smoking.
While feeling alarmed right now is normal, feeling guilty or scared won’t help your case much.
Learn how long sitting hours affect your body in this blog. Improve the quality of life by making small changes to your lifestyle and investing in health and fitness gadgets like body massagers to deal with pain and stress.
Side Effects of Sitting Too Long
Long sitting hours can be detrimental to your health. It poses a huge risk to your health making your body parts weaker over time and diminishing their strength and flexibility. Here are the most prevalent side effect caused by long sitting hours.
- Back Problems: Have you ever experienced back pain due to sitting for long hours? Of course, you have. Those office chairs are not healthy for your spine as they don’t provide the best support to your spine. Pretty soon, you start having back problems that take a toll on your health.
- Stiff Neck & Shoulders: Your neck and shoulders are the first to face the brunt of the work stress when the work starts piling up. But that’s not the only reason. Stiffness could also occur from staring at your screen for a long time. Since you spend almost half of your day at work, it affects your spine.
- Tight Hips: Being in the same posture for a long period can cause tightness in your hip flexors. That is because long sitting hours make your muscles relaxed and deactivated. Over time, these muscles become weaker and shorter.
- Weak Legs & Glutes: Leg pain from sitting too long is one of the side effects that should not come to you as a surprise. Prolonged sitting causes fluid build-up in the veins, the leading cause of swelling and strain. This can further lead to varicose veins or spider veins. You might also feel numbness in tingling in the leg and feet.
- Other Health Risks: Sitting for long hours can pose some serious risks to your health, like obesity and cancer. Prolonged sitting increases cholesterol levels and blood pressure levels making you prone to cardiovascular diseases.
At Work: How To Avoid Long Sitting Hours
You cannot stop going to work because you have bills to pay, but you can take measures to mitigate health risks and keep the diseases at bay.
1. Take the stairs
Next time you take a lift to your office floor, don’t. Take the stairs instead unless your office is on the 25th floor. LOL! That elevator music is boring (and depressing) anyway.
Climbing the stairs improves your cardiovascular health and strengthens your muscles. It also burns more calories than jogging. What better way to reach 10,000 steps a day and burn fat?
2. Invest in a Cushion Massager
If your work chair feels like a prison, convert it into a comfortable retreat with a cushion massager. Since productivity is proportional to happiness, therapeutic massage sessions in your cushion massager will make your work enjoyable and less taxing. Enjoy a full body massage on your neck, shoulders, back, and even hips.
The deep kneading nodes in the massager produce the same soothing effect as hand massage movements. The cushion massager enhances blood circulation and keeps your muscles from getting stiff. The best thing is that it comes with a car charger so you can make long, uncomfortable commutes bearable and pleasant.
3. Take short walks
Make sure you take frequent breaks from sitting long hours in the office and get your body moving. Taking a stroll will improve your blood circulation and prevent the accumulation of fluids in your muscles.
Make a rule: For every hour you sit, take a small 10-minute break.
4. Follow the right sitting posture
Often, we find ourselves leaning on the table, which is not ideal for the health of our spine. To maintain a correct posture, you can take the help of medical & pain-relief supports like lumbar support or tailbone cushion. It maintains a proper curvature of the spine and provides optimum support for your back.
At Home: How To Fix A Sedentary Lifestyle
Little things matter. Here are some changes to add to your lifestyle and combat health risks from long sitting hours.
1. Do yoga
Stretching is good for your body. Even a simple stretch every day can prove beneficial for your health. Find out some time from your busy schedule to do yoga. A couple of rounds of Surya Namaskar will work wonders for your health.
If you cannot find time during the day, you could do some poses sitting in your chair. If that is also not possible, then the least you could do is stretch your body.
2. Get a massager for back and neck pain
Have you ever wished someone gave you a soothing back rub when you had to put in those late-nighters? Blow some steam off with a good neck massager when the stress levels chart off the roof. DeepHeal Pillow Massager is one of the best massagers for back and neck pain to invest in for your troubles.
3. Eat healthier
The least you can do is adopt a healthy diet full of protein and fiber. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and limit your sugar intake. Commit to drinking more water. Ideally, an adult should consume 3-4 liters of water every day. Is your water intake close to the ideal amount?
4. Do chores
Keeping yourself busy throughout the day keeps you fit and active. Though it may sound like a menial task, it is beneficial for your health. Something as simple as taking out the trash or cleaning the kitchen after a meal will add to your daily 10,000 steps goal. Just don’t be a sloth when you reach home after spending long sitting hours at work.
Develop Healthy Hobbies
Don’t get to the point where indulging in physical activity becomes an absolute necessity for you. Adopt a hobby that keeps you moving. Here are activities that will keep you on your toes and fight the ill consequences of a sedentary lifestyle.
1. Join a Zumba Class
Zumba is fun. A cross-section between dance and aerobics, Zumba is the fastest way to burn calories and boost serotonin levels at the same time.
If dancing is not your cup of tea, you can always indulge in activities like power jogging, biking, or swimming. The choice is yours. Your chances of being consistent will be more if you find the most joy in that activity.
2. Start Gardening
If you think gardening requires no physical effort, then you are wrong. Getting your hands dirty in the soil is a fun way to stay active and achieve mental satisfaction. Staying close to the plants gives a boost to your pheromones. The best part is you can start gardening on your balcony or backyard.
Taking the right measure to avoid long sitting hours is very critical. Otherwise, these problems will only get worse in your old age days. Don’t let your body be a house of diseases. Treat it like a temple and replace harmful habits with healthy ones.