Wellfie Wednesday Tip #118: Replacing Sedentary Time

Happy Wellfie Wednesday! Welcome back! This week we want to chat about the benefits of Replacing Sedentary Time. Sedentary time being the time you spend in sitting, such as watching television or playing video games. And it’s not so much that sitting is bad, it’s spending too much time sitting and being physical inactive. Of course after a long day of work or even after planned physical activity or sport, sitting and resting is perfectly fine. 

Now unfortunately, most recent data points to an increasing number of physically inactive adults, with just over half (51.7%) of American adults meeting the current Physical Activity Guidelines for aerobic activity. Placing a large percentage of Americans at greater risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and many more mortality causing diagnoses. 

Though fortunately, a recently published meta-analysis (indicating a higher quality of evidence) has shown that replacing your sedentary time with low-intensity physical activity or with moderate to vigorous physical activity may be beneficial. Greater benefit being found for those choosing to do moderate to vigorous physical activity, a level of intensity that holding a conversation is difficulty. But benefit was still had by those simply choosing to reallocate 30 minutes of their day with a low-intensity activity.

Try to find your most sedentary time of the day and replace it with some physical activity, even if it is just standing or walking for a bit. Thanks for all of the support, be sure to post your pictures this week and tag the WW crew members in your post (@TheFuelPhysio@Eric_in_AmERICa@FreestylePhysio@DianaKlatt) and keep the wave of healthy change going!

-WW Crew

Wellfie Wednesday Tip #60: Beyond the Traditional Benefits of Exercise!

Happy #WellfieWednesday friends!

     This week’s tip is brought to you by Eric (@Eric_in_AmERICa) and his take on the benefits of exercise. At this point the physical, mental, and emotional benefits of exercise have been well documented in numerous studies and articles, including our previous “Fitness vs Fatness” Wellfie Wednesday post brilliantly written by Aaron Perez. A simple Pubmed search on “benefits of physical activity” brings back over 16,000 results highlighting everything from improved cardiovascular function and decreased risk of falls, to improved symptoms of depression and decreased risk of dementia. However, I believe many of these articles miss one of the most important physical, mental, and emotional benefits of exercise: Building Resilience.

Merriam-Webster dictionary lists two definitions for the term Resilience:

1. The capability of a strained body to recover its size and shape after deformation caused especially by compressive stress

2. An ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change

     Let’s start with how exercise builds physical resilience in the body. Without getting too deep into the physiology, exercise is essentially the process of putting stress on muscles, tendons, bone, and other structures in order to break them down on a micro level so that your body can regenerate stronger tissues, capable of withstanding this increased load. The first definition refers directly to physical resilience as it presents in the body and how it can, with consistency, go on to improve strength, power, endurance, and other physical attributes.

     Physical activity builds greater mental and emotional resilience on several levels as it pertains to the second definition. The first step is the choice to move. Choosing not to exercise is easy and it requires little effort. Instead choosing to get up and move is already a small victory toward building resilience by deciding not to go with the easiest choice. As described above, the act of exercising introduces stress to your body and, over time, your tolerance for stress increases. Here’s where the magic happens- our brain is incredibly designed to transfer this effect from physical stress and also applies it to psychological and emotional stress! And so, as your strength, endurance, and other physical attributes improve, your tolerance for psychological and emotional stress also improve. Put simply, a hard workout makes it easier to tolerate other hard tasks in your life. Not to mention the endorphin boost that typically comes following a bout of exercise is a pretty beneficial mood enhancer! Check out the infographic below for more! 

Stay strong, both mentally AND physically, friends!

     Give this week’s tip a try and let us know what you think! As always, thanks for all of the #WellfieWednesday support. And be sure to tag the WW crew members in your post (@PBernerSPT@Eric_in_AmERICa@AaronPerezPT@DianaKlatt) and keep the wave of healthy change going!

- WW Crew

Wellness Wednesday Tip #6: Take the Stairs

Happy Wednesday Everyone!

     This week’s tip involves adding some additional physical activity to your day. I want to first give credit to the University of Salford for sparking the idea. Check out the photos of their elevators and stairs, an awesome way to remind people to move more. I wouldn’t be opposed to having messages like this posted on every elevator. 

     I know sometimes we feel our day is too busy or cut short, and we find it difficult to find time for exercise. Stairs are an excellent way to give your physical activity level a little boost. In many instances I’ve found the stairs to be faster than the elevator, eliminating that factor of time you may have. The research behind increasing your physical activity and the benefits of exercise is scientifically strong. This post could be pages long if I gave you all the benefits of moving more throughout your day, so instead I’ll I just share with you the CDC’s benefits of physical activity

  • Controls your weight
  • Reduces your risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, and some cancers
  • Strengthens your bones and muscles
  • Improves your mental health and mood
  • Improves your ability to do daily activities and prevent falls
  • Increases your chances of living longer

     But let’s say you work on the 32nd floor, there’s no need to climb all those stairs if you’re not in a healthy position to do so, start out small and gradually add. Don’t think of the stairs as just a part of the fire escape route, think of them as a way to easily add some exercise to your day. So take the stairs, even if it’s just one flight of them, you’ll be glad you did!

Thanks for reading! Continue to spread the word for #WellfieWednesday and share your healthy lifestyle accomplishments. 

- Dr. Patrick Berner, PT, DPT
- Dr. Eric Uveges, PT, DPT