Apart from being confined to your bed with a bad illness (everyone hates the flu), when do you think we are the least happy?
Many of you probably already know the answer to this: when you are at work! According to a study published in The Economic Journal, researchers at the University of Sussex and the London School of Economics, looked at over one million responses from the smarthphone app, Mappiness, which gauges a person’s happiness by randomly asking them what they are feeling during certain activities. The study found that during work (compared to life outside of work) there is nearly an 8 percent drop in happiness… No doubt?
[Note: The researchers indicated that caution needs to be taking with the data due to the fact that mostly younger employed individuals or individuals in a full-time educational program were more likely to respond.]
Economist Dr. George MacKerron (creator of Mappiness) said, “It is common to hear people say that they enjoy their work, but the Mappiness data show that people are happier doing almost anything other than working. Although we may be positive about our jobs when reflecting on the meaning and purpose they give us, and the money they provide, actually engaging in paid work comes at a significant psychological cost. It appears that work is highly negatively associated with momentary wellbeing: work really is disutility, as economists have traditionally assumed. At any given moment, we would rather be doing almost anything else.” That’s some interesting stuff!
Making Work More Enjoyable
Work can get monotonous if we simply sit in our cubicle the entire day only engaging with our computer screens. Here are few simple ways to help liven up your work day and help you make it go by faster:
Get Up and Active
One of the best ways to give yourself a break or to help clear your mind, is to occasionally get up and take a stroll around the office. I’m not saying to not work for lengthy periods of time, but take 5 minutes to walk to the bathroom or walk to the breakroom area! This will help break up your day and give you a clear perspective as you head back to your desk.
Use Your Lunch Break Wisely
Many of us have a one hour lunch break and many of us simply waste it by heading to the local fast food joint. Instead use this time to get in some exercise to help clear your mind and get you ready for the second half of the workday. A 30 minute workout is a great way to burn off some stress that you have built up throughout the morning. Plus, when your mind is completely off of work, the second half of the day will go by way faster!
Don’t Be a Grinch
We all know those people in the office that don’t talk to anyone and keep to themselves. While many people do have social anxiety issues, many people simply don’t want to interact with their coworkers because they don’t want to be there. That’s really no way to look at it. If you are literally going to be spending 8+ hours a day with these people you might as well build fun relationships. This will ensure the day doesn’t crawl by so slow. Time flies with you are having fun… more fun… right?
Yes, many of you out there really really dislike being at work but for many of us it is frankly a part of life! Why not make the most of it? Start by getting up and taking quick breaks to break up the day, be smart about your lunch break, and learn more about your coworkers! Make the most of it!
Need more motivational help or just help in creating an exercise program? Head on over to DIY Active: “Fit.Food.Life,” for more!
It’s always important to be aware of the latest scientific findings – not only because they are interesting but also because they can help us exercise smarter and therefore get healthier. Literally, everyday dozens of new studies are published to help us do just that. Here are 4 of the more interesting studies from this year so far.
Couples are more likely to get in shape together
Here’s some proof for what you already might know – partners are more likely to get healthy if they both make improvement in their lives! This research found that when people tried to either lose weight, start getting active, or quit smoking their success rate was dependent on whether their partner made positive changes as well!
A scientist at Cancer Research UK, Dr. Julie Sharp explained, “Getting some support can help people take up good habits. For example if you want to lose weight and have a friend or colleague who’s trying to do the same thing you could encourage each other by joining up for a run or a swim at lunchtime or after work…”
Basically, the couple who exercises together gets healthy together!
Long periods of sitting can increase your risk of death – regardless of exercise
Let’s face it; we all sit for very long periods every day while working. This has found to be associated with a higher risk of many diseases including heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and even death. What’s more shocking is that regular exercise doesn’t seem to lower your risk either!
One author of the research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, Dr. Atler said, “Our study finds that despite the health-enhancing benefits of physical activity, this alone may not be enough to reduce the risk for disease. Avoiding sedentary time and getting regular exercise are both important for improving your health and survival. It is not good enough to exercise for 30 minutes a day and be sedentary for 23 and half hours.”
The study authors suggested everyone needs to decrease their sedentary or sitting time by 2-3 hours in their 12 hour day! It looks like small lifestyle changes are the key to a healthy life!
Cut life threatening conditions via group walking
Take a hike – seriously! Take a hike with friends and you can decrease your risk of life threatening conditions including stroke, depression, and heart disease! The study published in British Journal of Sports Medicine demonstrated that people who regularly walked in groups had a lower cholesterol, blood pressure, and body fat which could be due to the motivation to participate in the first place!
One author, Sarah Hanson explained, “Our research shows that joining a walking group is one of the best and easiest ways to boost overall health. The benefits are wide ranging — and they go above and beyond making people more physically active. What’s more, people find it relatively easy to stick with this type of exercise regime…The research evidence suggests people enjoy attending walking groups and appear less likely to drop out than many other forms of activity.”
We have discussed the importance of walking in order to increase your exercise capacity and improve your overall quality of life before. So find grab a few friends and start your own walking group today – fresh air, exercise, and good company is good for you!
Laziness (lack of exercising) is responsible for twice as many early deaths as obesity
Want more evidence that walking is a great way to improve your health and exercise capacity? Recent research found that a brisk walk for only 20 minutes was enough to reduce a person’s risk of early death! In fact, the study found that nearly twice as many deaths can be attributed to lack of exercise than compared to obesity! With the most recent data at hand, the researchers found in Europe that over 675,000 early deaths could be attributed to lack of physical activity while half of that – over 335,000 deaths – were attributed to obesity!
Lead researcher Professor Ulf Ekelund from the Medical Research Council (MRC) said, “This is a simple message: just a small amount of physical activity each day could have substantial health benefits for people who are physically inactive. Although we found that just 20 minutes would make a difference, we should really be looking to do more than this — physical activity has many proven health benefits and should be an important part of our daily life.”
Even the smallest amount of exercise can help improve your health – so make it a point to get up and get active every day!
It’s important to stay on the ball when it comes to the latest health research. From these 4 studies from 2015 we can already see some amazing findings to help shape our lifestyle this year – get active and get active with your loved ones! You now have the science so go out and implement it!
For more information on at-home fitness and nutrition backed by science visit Always Active Athletics: “Your #1 Source For At-Home Fitness!”
“Behold the turtle. He makes progress only when he sticks his neck out.” ― James Bryant Conant
Ok, so how many of you would consider yourselves “risk-averse” with regard to your health? Do you adopt “reasons” why you can’t do different things to improve your health? Many of us do, and we all know change is difficult under the best of circumstances.
Getting healthy and making positive changes takes a certain amount of risk too.
We worry that working out harder could open us up to injury, or signing up for a yoga class takes more time away from our friends and families. There are multitudes of small healthy things we make reasons not to do, like:
+ buying fresh fruits and vegetables regularly,
+ incorporating vitamin and mineral supplements into a daily routine
+ taking a walk at lunchtime
+ seeing the doctor for a long overdue checkup.
= But they all add up over time to a healthier you!
So take a risk…pick a few…commit to even one.
The value to your health is definitely worth the risk of inconveniences like re-prioritizing a daily schedule, or adding an extra step to your morning routine to down much needed supplements like a daily multivitamin
and a dose of calcium plus vitamin D3
Dance on the wild side a little further and try a different dosage form like liquids to take your supplements. High quality liquid supplements
are an easy way to adapt to taking what you need daily – put it all in a smoothie for breakfast as you rush out the door.
Stick your neck out there and do not let a little risk stand in the way of healthy progress.