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I won't stand for this news
- James Clark
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So here I am pretty pleased with my sedentary lifestyle that gives me plenty of quality time with my computer screen when I stumble upon a news report that says I'm digging myself an early grave.
It seems, if this report is to be believed, that sitting for long stretches of time has disastrous health effects. In fact, the health agency NHS says the kind of extreme sitting that I so embrace can lead to obesity, cancer and premature death.
The report says, and get this, that I need to take a break from all my sitting. This report might as well have been written in Chinese because this is a foreign language to me.
Take a break from sitting? Sitting is what I do to take a break from everything else in my life. If I'm going to take a break from sitting, the next step for me is to take a nap. What rational person would take a break from sitting and do something like stand?
While my argument certainly seems without refute, not so fast says the NHS. The organization is taking my reckless lifestyle and giving it a disapproving nod.
The NHS says the prolonged sitting which I so much enjoy greatly increases my risk for what it calls a "cardiovascular event." It goes on to say my sort of radical sitting increases my chance of death from any cause by 49 percent.
Is it just me or is someone with the NHS just throwing random numbers out there? How does sitting my life away increase my chances of getting hit by a bus?
But wait, the news gets even worse. To limit my amount of sitting time, the NHS says I need to stop doing so many of the things that have become the backbone of my existence. For instance, I need to limit the amount of time I sit in front of the TV each day. That also goes for the computer. And I need to reduce the amount of time I spend sitting and reading too.
Basically, the NHS wants to suck every nugget of happiness out of my life and replace it with things I can do while standing. The organization points out Earnest Hemingway wrote his novels standing so other people can make lifestyle modifications too.
I'm not one to take a swipe at advice, especially when it pertains to something as important as my life, so I'm going to try my best to make subtle changes to increase my chances of living longer. That may not be viewed as a positive thing for some of you, but it is for me.
The quickest and easiest change I can think of to spend less time in front of my computer is to work less. So based on this vital and very meaningful NHS report, I'm going to solemnly vow to spend less time at the office, effective now.
I should stress I'm not entirely sure how this pledge will work out for me. I'll have to ask the NHS if standing in the unemployment line qualifies as a positive life change.
Standard editor James Clark can be reached at 473-2191.