Wellness Institute

Wellness Tips

Visit our Weekly Wellness Tips page for more healthy tips!

Take A Stand Against Sedentary Living

By many standards, 10,000 steps a day is deemed a “very active” lifestyle. A pedometer study of an Amish community showed the average man totaled about 18,000 steps a day (about 9 miles) and the average woman totaled about 14,000 (about 7 miles). In contrast, the average deskbound American totals just 5,000 to 6,000 steps a day.

Less activity means more weight gain

Our modern lifestyles have greatly reduced our activity levels. Just 4% of that active Amish population was obese (as defined by a Body Mass Index above 30) vs. 31% of our adult population.

One thing we can do to prevent weight gain is to increase our energy expenditure with gentle physical activity such as regular walking, going up and down stairs, and even standing rather than sitting. A person may be burning just 200 to 300 extra calories a day with these activities, but in a year that really adds up.

How physically active are you at work?

An effective way to diagnose if you have “sitting disease” is to track the total time you spend sitting down. Use this form to track the amount of time you spend sitting at work. Include any commute time, lunch and/or break time that you spend seated during your day.

Monitor your sitting at work for one week, then do the math.

Average total # of hours per day spent sitting down ____ x 5 = ____.
(This is your average total # of hours per work week spent sitting down.)

Now take your average total # of hours per work week spent sitting down x 4 = ____.
(This is your average total # of hours per month spent sitting down.)

Daily Sitting Scores
Rating Time Spent Sitting
Excellent Below 1-2 hours a day along with very active/physical labor during day
Good 2-3 hours a day with moderate movements during day
Average 4-5 hours per day with some light movements during day
Poor 6 or more hours per day with no movement during day