Health has been a developing passion of mine over the last 18 months and I’ve made some great strides and learned a tone in my own health journey. One of the key lessons I’ve learned is the effects that prolonged sitting has on our health and the need for regular movement.
After attending a recent celebratory event as part of a community I’m a member of, I met David Florence who is a Breathwork Facilitator and Holistic Health Coach who gave such a great speech at this event that I had to bring him onto the podcast.
During our conversation, David stressed that sitting for long periods of time can have detrimental effects on our health and lead to issues such as pulmonary embolism and deep vein thrombosis. The solution lies in frequent movement breaks, such as taking short breaks every 45 minutes to an hour which can significantly improve our well-being.
I believe that this is a simple habit, easy for us all to do. Of course, it may not always be feasible to move every hour, if you’re caught up in a Zoom call or on an important project, but the principle stays the same; to move as frequently as we can, find opportunities to get up and move whenever possible, and listen to our bodies.
One idea that David shares, is instead of having a strict one-hour lunch break and to have shorter breaks throughout the day, such as two to five minutes every hour, combined with a half-hour lunch break. This approach can not only help with frequent movement but also help maintain productivity and prevent the post-lunch slump that often occurs after a longer lunch break. I’ve applied something similar for myself, and I’m reaping the benefits. Feel free to play around with the timings and try it out for yourself.
Looking after ourselves, and our bodies in this way is a form of self-care and self-compassion. We often think that self-care is a bubble bath, which might be the case but it’s also taking the actions that you know will help your body and mind to perform, heal, rest, and recover. We might have a hard time motivating ourselves to carry out these habits, due to overthinking and having the tendency to be too hard on ourselves as we constantly worry about what others think and feel the need to do more.
Start with the basics of taking short movement breaks and doing what you feel you can do. That’s why I love walking because it’s entry-level, simple, and easy yet so powerful with many health benefits. Practising forgiveness and gratitude are also powerful tools for personal growth and well-being if you notice that you’re being too hard on yourself.
David, and I discuss many other health-affirming practices such as breath work and learning how to breathe properly which is vitally important, as well as his personal journey of self-discovery which was sparked by a wake-up call after a particularly challenging year in their business. David describes how they turned to practices like cold therapy and breathwork, which had a profound impact on their physical and mental well-being. Inspired by his own transformation, David wanted to help others and started a YouTube channel to share his experiences, insights, and journey with others. You can learn more about David’s work and check out his YouTube channel here.
Overall, prioritising short movement breaks is a simple yet highly effective habit that we can all apply to our lives to improve health, productivity, focus, and longevity.