Eight easy ways to keep moving all day long

Anyone with a desk job will know the feeling. It gets to around 3pm, lunch remnants sit on your desk, and suddenly, you realise you might not have taken a step in hours. 

I finally made the move to getting a Fitbit earlier this year, and was shocked at how little I walk around during the day - I smugly thought I was doing around 6000 steps and I was in fact lucky to crack 2500. 

The phrase "sitting is the new smoking" is one that got bandied about last year, with many health professionals calling it a 'silent killer'. 

So how do we combat it? 

This month marks the annual Fitbit 'MoveMeant' challenge, with famous faces throughout the country trying to out-step each other, all in the name of Diabetes research. 

According to Diabetes NZ, the disease now affects over 250,000 New Zealanders and a further one in four Kiwis are thought to have prediabetes.  

Diabetes NZ CEO Heather Verry says Kiwis can take action to reduce their risk of Type 2 diabetes in three main ways. (Type 1 is an auto-immune and cannot be prevented).

  • Staying physically active and getting 30 minutes of regular exercise in everyday whether you're walking, running, swimming, cycling or simply mowing the lawns
  • Eating a healthy and balanced diet
  • Keeping your weight in a healthy range

"Keeping physically active is incredibly important for the management of both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes," she told Newshub. 

"For those with Type 1 it can help the body to maintain a consistent glucose level and for those with Type 2 diabetes, its helps to avoid long-term complications. On top of this movement increases feelings of wellness and vitality and can help in reducing stress levels."

You may recognise MoveMeant Challenge participant and personal trainer Rhys Jolly from your Instagram feed - he often can be seen putting the likes of Art Green and Sharyn Casey through their paces. 

(No, you don't have to be able to do that.)

He's put together some top tips to keep you moving all day long: 

  1. Focus on the positive response you get from exercise or moving more; the more you focus on this feeling, the more you will see exercise as a want and not a chore. I can't stress this one enough  it's what has changed my outlook with health and wellbeing.
  2. Grab a friend or your partner as sweating together is better! It adds enjoyment and accountability.
  3. Plan your day out so you have scheduled exercise (you time) in your day. 
  4. Have a timer on that goes off every hour and do a walk around the office or down the stairs to the main entrance 
  5. Have a drink bottle on your desk at work and try consume 2-3L per day. Overtime it's empty and you'll need to get up to fill it up.
  6. Walk around the block or to the local park for lunch, or choose a new local coffee spot and walk there 
  7. Opt for a standing desk - keep standing and moving all day long
  8. Routine and consistency. Whatever you are doing, keep it simple and make it routine