Finding Ways to Combat Being a Sedentary Sales Person
Being a sales person in Hong Kong vs the UK has very different issues for the healthy individual.
Hong Kong has the trappings of entertainment with food and drink on a regular basis. But most sales people in Hong Kong are quite active as they move around the territory on public transport and walking.
Being a sales person in the UK as I am right now has very different issues to deal with. There is less eating and drinking. But there is also much less walking and movement. You go from door to car, to door to car again. Rinse and repeat until you realise you’ve actually hardly moved throughout the whole day.
During my trip to the UK, I noticed that my steps reduced massively, by 50% or more. That combined with no gym activity meant that my total energy expenditure went right down.
I attempted to combat the difference in energy expenditure by only eating once or twice a day. Although arguably I often do that in Hong Kong also.
The biggest issue I found was simply being sat in a car for hours, going from appointment to appointment, without any movement at all.
I noticed my posture was much worse. There is something about sitting in a car which puts the hips in a compromised position, and ensures the large gluteal and hamstring muscles remain inactive in a seated position for hours on end.
So how to combat this if it’s your job, which it is for many busy executives.
This is when I took inspiration from my quarantine experience, and tried a new format of movement I termed “car dancing”.
Now, as a disclaimer, I do not know if this is legal. Although there is nothing in the highway code to say you cannot do this as long as both hands are kept on the steering wheel.
Whilst sitting in a standard traffic jam on the M25, with my lower back starting to ache through lack of movement, I knew I had to do something. So once again I put on some music, and simply started to move my body and dance to the tunes.
Let’s be clear. When I say “dance”, this is not something which would be shown on a tv show. It might not look particularly pretty, and for sure you do not have to wave your hands in the air like you just don’t care. Keep your hands firmly on the steering wheel.
However, what you can move and gyrate are your hips. As the music plays, you can dance in your car seat and stay mobile while sitting still.
Studies show that being sedentary is the cause of many of our body aches and pains. It is not sitting that does this per se. Although being seated is often blamed as this is how most people stay sedentary.
Sure there are reasons why sitting is not great for your body, as you turn off two of your major muscle groups.
But it’s the lack of movement which is actually the main cause for aches and pains.
So if you can find a way to move whilst you are in a traditionally sedentary position such as sitting in your car, this can help mitigate the damage done by being seated and still for too long.
Once again this is purely observational and “car dancing” has not been a studied area. But knowing that being sedentary is the major cause of muscle impingements and pain, it is a logical conclusion to assume that moving your butt while sitting in your car is surely going to help.
If nothing more, the movement will increase energy output, which will help increase your calorie burn, keeping your energy balance more aligned.