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Just Get Moving!

Why you should, how you can, plus a bonus healthy recipe to try

Sit. Stay. Repeat.

We've made sitting into an art form. But too much sitting is now linked to many diseases and conditions that are inhibiting our lives or even ending our lives prematurely. Obesity, cancer, cardiovascular disease, back pain, depression....and the list goes on.
If you're someone who feels frustrated when you hear you should "exercise daily", it's time to rethink what that really means. It's all about movement - just plain moving in some way, shape or form, which doesn't have to involve a gym membership or fancy equipment or even special clothing.
Moving every day has the power to improve every part of your body: your muscles, bones, joints, brain, heart and lungs. And our bodies actually crave the chemistry of movement! We truly weren't made to sit on the couch or to sit at our desks for so long. Once you start getting up and moving, you typically don't go back to a sedentary lifestyle. Your health gets better, you tend to eat better foods, your productivity gets better, you enjoy your work more - and you enjoy your life more. Who doesn't want more of that?
Then how do we get more of that if we're not moving enough? Think about the kinds of activities you enjoy doing. What did you used to like to do that you don't do any more? Start small and go from there. Even small movements can have a significant impact on both your physical and mental health. And you can do them from the comfort of your home without even having to change into gym clothes!

Let's not go into a fall and winter of more social distancing and working from home without getting enough of the movement our bodies need, and crave. See the Fitness Tips below for some ideas of how to easily incorporate more movement into your life, and just get moving!

Contributors: Anschutz Health and Wellness Center; Andrew Jagim, Ph.D. Sports and Medicine physician 

Get More Movement Into Your Day

Here are a few ways to do that:

  • Use a standing desk when possible, or just stand up often and move your feet
  • Walk around your house when on conference calls, or do squats, or lunges, or stretches
  • Set a reminder to stand and move at least once per hour
  • Change your office chair to a stability ball
  • Walk around your house when doing routine things like brushing your teeth, or find ways to move and stretch while cooking or doing dishes
  • Extend tasks around your house, such as making multiple trips to put away clean laundry instead of hauling it all in one trip (thank you Angela for this tip!)
  • Use the stairs in your house - a few trips up and down are a quick and easy way to get your heart pumping
  • Take a walk over your lunch break (and yes, you really should get away from eating while you work every day!)
  • Walk on a treadmill or other exercise machine while watching TV
  • Park far from the entrance of the grocery store or mall
  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator
  • Do that yard work - mowing, gardening and raking leaves are great ways to exercise
  • Do simple stretches, often - your body will thank you for it
  • Create the environment to be reminded to do something. Strategically place post-it notes around your home/office to inspire you to move
  • If have exercise equipment like dumbbells, or bands etc., keep them out and visible so you may be more likely to use them
Lastly, try to make whatever you do kind of fun or a game. You might just find you keep doing it more often, and that's the end goal here.
A New Recipe To Try:
Crispy Chickpea Caesar Salad

I've never really been a Caesar Salad fan. Probably because the dressing was so heavy (unhealthy) and there wasn't much sustainability to it. But this lightened up version was amazing and definitely keeps you full for a long time. If you're a Caesar Salad skeptic like I was, give it a try.

Serves 2-3
Crispy Chickpeas:
1 15-oz can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
Lightened-Up Caesar Dressing
2 cloves garlic
3 T. plain Greek yogurt
1 tsp prepared horseradish
1 T. mayonnaise
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce (could use soy sauce)
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
Juice of 2 lemons
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp salt, plus more as needed
1/4 tsp black pepper, plus more as needed
4 cups coarsely chopped kale, stems removed
4 cups coarsely chopped romaine lettuce
2 T grated Parmesan cheese, plus more as needed

  1. To make Crispy Chickpeas, preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment or foil.  Add the chickpeas, oil, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper and toss to coat.  Bake for 20-25 minutes or until crispy and golden.
  2. While the chickpeas are roasting, make the Dressing in a food processor, blender, or with a hand-held immersion blender.  Blend all ingredients until smooth and creamy. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper, if desired.
  3. To make the Salad, combine the kale and 2-3 T of the dressing in a large bowl.  Massage the dressing into the kale for about 1 minute or until it softens and reduces the volume.  Add the romaine, Parmesan, crispy chickpeas and the desired amount of dressing.  Toss to combine and serve with additional dressing and grated Parmesan cheese.
And enjoy!!
Recipe courtesy of Eat More Plants, by Molly Krebs

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