“Movement is a required nutrient for health,
just like food and water.” –Ari Whitten
- Step 1: Go from sitting to standing, and preferably moving. Move constantly throughout the day. There should not be a whole hour when you are sitting.
- Step 2: Go for at least one daily walk (15-60 minutes), preferably outside. Walk as much as possible during the day.
- Step 3: Once step 1 and 2 have become habit, then, and only then, should you consider adding workouts. Most people get this backwards, thinking that doing a workout is sufficient. But sitting all day erases the metabolic benefits of exercise.
Program #2: Characteristics of “Hunter-Gatherer” Fitness
- Walk a lot, 4-10 miles per day.
- Do occasional short bursts of intense exertion (like sprinting) a few times a week with adequate rest in between.
- Lift, carry, drag, push, and pull heavy objects.
- Move and exercise outside in the natural world.
- Move and exercise on grass and dirt instead of cement and asphalt.
- Move and exercise in social contexts with friends and family.
- If you have a day of extreme activity, follow it with an easier day. Rest always follows work.
- Everyone, except for the very young and very old, needs to move lots every day for the entirety of their lives.
- Video: Interview with Dr. James A. Levine on “Sitting Disease”
- Documentary: The Truth About Exercise
- Books: Move a Little, Lose a Lot by Dr. James A. Levine; Forever Fat Loss by Ari Whitten; 303 Kid-Approved Exercises & Active Games
Inexpensive Equipment (under $60)
- Standing Desk
- Laptop Stand (you can use a sturdy box, too)
- Wooden Balance Board or Plastic Balance Board
- Stability Ball
- Pull-up Bar
- Mini Trampoline
- Free weights
- mp3 player
Have more suggestions for movement resources and equipment? Leave a comment or email me, and I will add them to this list!
See my post Move. for more information on NEAT (nonexercise activity thermogenesis), activity suggestions, and thoughts on exercise.