6/24/12

Stand up and take your health back

Very fittingly, I listened to a blog all about health while on a bike ride today. It blew my mind. The podcast was a May 9, 2012 interview with New York Times writer and author of The First 20 Minutes, Gretchen Reynolds. The piece was called Stand Up, Walk Around, Even Just For '20 Minutes.' The entire interview is worth a listen and I've already added her book to my must reads. Here are some highlights of the interview:
  • Stand up every 20 minutes. If you are in a job where you sit all day long, much like myself, merely standing up every 20 minutes will help your body maintain a healthier physiology. Sitting is killing you is one of my favorite infographics and it's SCARY what sitting does to you. If you just make an effort to stand up for 2 minutes every 20 minutes, you decrease your chance of heart disease, diabetes and other ailments. If you walk to the window or around the office, then you start burning more calories and start losing weight, too.
  • Stretching before a workout is NOT advised. The reason is when you stretch before you are warmed up, your body thinks that your muscle is going to tear and that's not good. Stretching after is okay, but not mandatory. Thank goodness, cause I don't stretch very often - before OR after.
  • You were born about as flexible as you're going to get.
  • While running burns more calories, you still get almost ALL the benefits with walking. The biggest difference is that your chance of injury is significantly higher as a runner. Walking is what humans were designed to do, says Reynolds. Nearly 75% of runners say that they experience an injury at least once a year and that walking is a safer and almost as beneficial activity as running.
  • If you've worked out for over an hour, chocolate milk is actually one of the BEST drinks to replenish your body's nutrients. 
  • If you have healthy knees, squats can keep them healthy by strengthening the muscle around the knee.
Reynolds really knows her stuff. After hearing this interview, I subscribed to her NY Times blog and will be picking up her book shortly.

3 comments:

pandamans said...

whoa. i'm not supposed to stretch before running? okie dokie. i guess i'll just do the warm ups. put this on hold. the stacks keep piling up.

pandamans said...

welp - did the warm ups sans stretching, ran the 7 miles and closed with stretches and I'm no worse for the wear today - though I was definitely much more clued in to any little pops or pings. this will actually save me about 20 minutes per run session, which I can put towards reading, so thanks.

Eva Gogola said...

That's awesome! I've been really sticking to the stand up every 20 minutes rule at work :)