Saturday, June 18, 2011 • Walton, NE 68461





(LINCOLN, NE June 20, 2011) – We all know that cigarettes are bad for us, but now there is new evidence showing that a sedentary lifestyle can be as detrimental to our health as smoking. 

Several other studies also found that prolonged sitting makes us more prone to heart disease – already the leading killer of Americans – as well as cancer, obesity, diabetes, and even premature death. 

“We’ve always known that sitting for long stretches of time can make us more vulnerable to serious diseases,” says Matt Scott, a personal trainer at Prairie Life Fitness in Lincoln, NE. “But now these studies reveal even more bad news: that sedentary lifestyle is nearly as harmful to our health as cigarette smoking, which is the single most preventable cause of disease, disability, and death in the United States.” 

These findings are all the more alarming because they come on the heels of other recently released studies indicating that long periods of time spent sitting in our cars and offices are significant factors in the obesity epidemic sweeping the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than two-thirds of Americans are overweight, and a third are considered obese. 

“It’s all an unfortunate chain of events: sedentary lifestyle leads to obesity, which, in turn, is a well-known factor in heart disease, diabetes, and some types of cancer,” Scott notes.  

He points to statistics showing that 40 to 50 million Americans have sedentary jobs, which don’t allow them to get the recommended amount of at least 30 minutes of moderately intensive physical activity five days a week. “Add this to research indicating that 60 percent of Americans don’t exercise enough and over 25 percent are not active at all, and what you get is a recipe for disaster,” Scott says. 

Since it is not always possible to avoid situations where prolonged sitting is necessary – for example, in a workplace – Scott recommends “sneaking-in” some exercises to offset the inactivity. 

“Finding time to exercise – maybe before or after work or during the lunch hour – can literally be a real life saver,” Scott says. 

He also suggests fitting in some “mini-workouts” into the daily work routine.  For example: 

Make a habit of taking stairs, instead of the elevator –or, better yet, run up and down. If you do it several times a day, every day, it’ll add up. 

When you’re out of the office,  resist the urge to take your car, especially for short distances. Walk to your destination and back quickly enough to get your heart rate up. 

After work,  don’t “relax” in front of TV or the computer. “If you finally have a bit of free time, use it for some form of physical activity, not to sit around some more,” Scott says.  


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About Matt Scott, Fitness Expert:

Matt is a certified personal trainer through NASM, ACE and NESTA.  In 2010 he made some huge changes in his own life, losing over 50 pounds. This process led him to become more involved in health and fitness and for him to discover his true passion for helping people change their lives.  In 2010, Matt and wife Kristy founded the American Health and Fitness Institute, a nonprofit organization to raise awareness for childhood obesity and other fitness related issues facing kids in our community. Matt also has special training working with older adults and is the only AARP approved Certified Trainer in the Omaha and Lincoln area by the American Council on Exercise (ACE).  Matt can be reached at 402-719-6430 or and is available for media interviews on topics related to health, wellness and fitness.


Matt Scott