fitness · health

But can you sit in the evening if you have an active job?

You’d have to be living in a cave, under a rock, with your earbuds in not to have heard that sitting is the new smoking. Our sedentary lifestyles are killing us. We barely move at all and even those of us who exercise ferociously can’t offset the damage from sitting 9 hours or more a day.

So we’re buying standing desks, writing at treadmills, running our errands on foot, and doing burpees waiting for the kettle to boil. (That last one is Tracy.)

It’s enough to make you think that being a professor is the wrong career. I could have been a park ranger, a dog walker, a fitness instructor, a city gardener, a mail carrier, a pole dancer….any job with an active orientation.

Surely those people with physically demanding jobs get to come home and flop in front of Dr Who without any worries about sitting disease?

Sadly no.

In Does the Benefit on Survival from Leisure Time Physical Activity Depend on Physical Activity at Work? A Prospective Cohort Study Holtermann et al set out to “investigate if persons with high physical activity at work have the same benefits from leisure time physical activity as persons with sedentary work.” And the answer is they do.

The survival benefit from exercise in addition to work activities ranged from 1.5–3.6 years for moderate activity and 2.6–4.7 years for high leisure time physical activity.

So, no one gets to watch Dr. Who!

Me, I might invest in a treadmill television. And I’m a bit relieved there’s no cause for swapping careers. I love my job.

My favourite doctor below. I love the t-shirt that reads, “You never forget your first doctor.”