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22 Easy Ways to Integrate Exercise Into Your Day

Updated: Jul 5

Have you ever heard the saying, "sitting is the new smoking?"

This refers to the detriment of inactivity on the your overall health and wellbeing.

Regular physical activity is required to keep your body functioning properly. This encompasses not only a healthy BMI, but also structural, emotional, mental, and hormonal health (Cook, 2013).

The human body is made to be active, but the convenience of many modern luxuries, such as cars and other technologies, has put a strain on our active lifestyles.

Rather than performing physical work, many people find themselves stuck in a job that requires them to sit at a desk for 8+ hours a day. In fact, roughly 86% of the American working population indicates that their daily professional duties require them to be in a sitting position (Ergotron, 2013). On top of that, most people spend an additional 12-15 hours in a sedentary state each day, sleeping, eating, watching TV, or scrolling through their phones or computers (Ergotron, 2013). This means that, on average, most Americans spend an average of 3 hours per day in an active or standing state (Ergotron, 2013).

Prolonged periods of inactivity can contribute to a host of health issues from weight gain to diabetes and even more serious conditions, like cancer. As more scientific information becomes available, the concern surrounding inactivity becomes more and more prominent.

So, what can you do today to improve your sedentary lifestyle?

Here are a few easy ways to begin integrating more physical activity into your daily lifestyle:

  1. Forego the elevator -- take the stairs!

  2. Stand while taking phone calls.

  3. Make a lap around your office every 30-60 minutes.

  4. Perform stretches at your desk.

  5. Rearrange your office -- situate your printer/copier in a place that requires you to stand up and walk to retrieve your papers.

  6. Need to talk to a co-worker? Skip the phone calls or emails. Get up and walk to his or her office.

  7. Choose a parking spot further away from the door.

  8. Instead of going to the movies, try an active "date night" such as a zoo trip.

  9. Watching TV? Do a quick set of push ups, squats or sit ups during commercial breaks.

  10. Waiting on dinner to finish cooking in the microwave, stovetop, or oven? Do jumping jacks while you wait.

  11. Skip the drive-thru -- park and walk inside the store or restaurant.

  12. Instead of online shopping, take a stroll through the storefronts of your local mall or shopping center.

  13. Get in the habit of doing 50 reps of any exercise before jumping in the shower.

  14. Do you have a stationary bike or treadmill? Position it in front of your TV and pedal while you watch your favorite shows.

  15. Volunteer to walk your friends' or neighbors' pets -- they might even pay you!

  16. Family game night? Lose the chairs and have everyone stand up around the table to play the game.

  17. Avoid sitting while folding your laundry.

  18. Schedule a family "active hour" each day -- this can be as simple as a walk around the block or a trip to the local park

  19. Set your alarm 15-30 minutes earlier for a quick morning workout.

  20. Leave the car at home--walk to get your mail.

  21. Plant a garden -- it requires physical activity to maintain!

  22. Join a local gym.



Cook, D. B. (2013). Made Whole: Regain the Health Your Body was Born to Enjoy by Working with the Missing Pieces of Wellness.

"Ergotron JustStand Survey & Index Report." (2013). Ergotron, Inc. Retrieved from


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