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Technology and modern conveniences are wonderful for business, but they take their tolls in other places. While a modern society takes advantage of some things, they suffer from the loss of others. Specifically, it is now very common to become completely sedentary at work, but enjoy the benefits of a successful life. It’s quite a conundrum.
At some point, most people realize that their health is just as important as their productivity. Many people arrive at a point where they begin to weigh career success with the ability to physically enjoy it. For this reason, extraordinary numbers of professionals are discovering that they need to pay more attention to fitness. There is only one problem. They have been sedentary for so long, even the thought of designing a new fit lifestyle is stressful.
What Does it Mean to be Sedentary?
There is no official formula to determine if you are sedentary. Basically, it comes down to how you spend your days. People accomplish great things in chairs. Huge business transactions, finalized personal projects, and profitable day trading all happen while seated. Though these activities are good for your bank account, they can contribute to a trend that is detrimental to health.
The human body is an amazingly adaptive machine. It molds itself to accommodate the lifestyle that it is used to. If a person spends years working in a chair, their body will conform. This means diverting energy to non-physical aspects. If a person is active everyday, their body will reserve energy for supporting things like muscles and metabolism.
There are several things that can serve as indicators of living a sedentary lifestyle. These include,
- Gradual weight gain from fat
- Constant physical fatigue and body soreness
- Decreased flexibility when performing simple daily actions
- Body aches and pains in joints, and in places like the lower back
- In short, doing virtually nothing that is physically challenging for long periods results in body decay. Raking a few leaves on the weekend does not count as vigorous physical activity. Carrying groceries to the front door doesn’t count either.
Starting an Exercise Program to Reverse a Sedentary Lifestyle
Changing a sedentary routine is difficult. It will involve adopting an exercise regimen and a new outlook. This doesn’t mean that a person working in an office suddenly has to begin training for a bodybuilding competition. What it does mean, is working with someone else who can see where the problems lie. This person can also recommend steps for change.
Being sedentary sometimes causes the body to develop certain health conditions. For most sedentary people, this is not the case. Still, it is always advised that a person have a medical checkup before they start a life change. This includes adopting a new exercise regimen.
Medical exams for this type of goal will inevitably include an evaluation of the heart and the respiratory system. ECG vs EKG tests are common. Electrocardiogram tests will show exactly how weak a heart has become because of years in a sedentary lifestyle. Simple EKGs show overall heart health. ECGs can identify abnormalities in specific chambers of the heart. Once a person is cleared for exercise by a doctor using these tests, the real transformation can begin.
Finding a Great Personal Trainer
Changing from a sedentary lifestyle to a more active one requires tough changes. An experienced personal trainer can help you transition from a life spent doing nothing. Trainers understand that you are wanting to improve your health, but you might need a great deal of help getting started.
The role of a good personal trainer is introducing a person to the many methods of reversing a sedentary trend. They will introduce you to class and individual fitness programs that meet specific goals. These goals include muscle gain, body reshaping, cardiovascular health improvements, and motion-based exercises that help with daily activities. Overall, the role of a personal trainer is to provide options that can be used to reverse the negative outcomes of being sedentary.
Along with education about proper exercise, a personal trainer will also introduce new nutritional concepts. In order to function in a healthy way, the body needs certain types of food combinations to maximize health. Most people eat food according to mood and situations. Consulting with a fitness professional allows a person to understand how food, exercise, and mindset contribute to a healthier lifestyle.
Switching Sedentary and Active Lifestyles
Breaking sedentary habits is difficult. Anyone who wants to change should expect certain things. These include:
- Making room in the day for exercise and prescribed physical exertion
- Fatigue, soreness, and positive body changes from switching routines
- More effort in preparing meals each day
- Adjusting work routines to match a heightened desire to be active throughout the day
When a person switches from being sedentary to active and fit, all aspects of their life changes. They will become a “pacing thinker” instead of a “seated thinker.” They will give up overtime to make a personal training appointment. They will have more time in the morning to live, instead of taking time to work out muscle aches and pains. Dropping the trials of being sedentary is wonderfully freeing, but it takes effort. With the help of a personal trainer, it is an absolutely achievable goal.