LGN 98: The Sedentary Athlete

How active are you? How much time do you spend constructively?

This isn’t an attempt to make you feel guilt or shame. Just something I’ve been thinking about after looking at my MapMyRide/Fitness stats and my FB page.

I was looking at my Facebook page and it looks like I’ve been doing a lot of stuff. Very active, very social. I have been keeping busy. Trying to get out and about and make the most — or something, at least — of the outdoors. Gotta get while the gettin’ is good.

It’s all relative. The following charts don’t include training at UA (but they do include the occasional bike rides to and from the gym), which happens two to four times a week, depending on extra-curricular recreation: semi-private, kettlebell class, mental toughness.

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When I did the math, though, I was a little disappointed. There are 168 hours in a week. Subtract eight hours of sleep per night and you’re left with 112 hours of wakeful activity. On my best weeks I’m clocking about 9 hours of physical activity. The rest are spent sitting: working, driving, lounging in front of screens, eating.

9 out of 112 hours. Wow. That puts things in perspective. What can I do to not be so sedentary? We’re so out of touch with … life. Moving. Not that everybody should be slaving away, literally or figuratively, but come on.

So then I was thinking socially. Hanging out with good people has kind of raised my social metabolism. I quickly get bored or restless now. So I did a little more math. I work at home, by the way, which greatly affects these numbers.

On a good, very busy week when I train three to four times a week, have two social outings in the same week (almost unheard of), and visit the family in Baltimore — that adds up to about 12 hours of being around people.

12/168 = 0.07142857142 or 7%

That means on my best week I spend 93% of my time solo. That’s a lot. And yet that makes up for a “busy” week for me. Again, it puts things in perspective.

If you have a spouse or live-in significant other and kids and a job you spend about 1% of your time alone. If that were me I’d definitely need to actively seek out quiet time.

Interesting.

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