A rant against sitting, and the importance of walking.

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No matter how tired I am, even when acutely sleep-deprived I can always just get up and go walk outside for hours, or do physical things whether it's cleaning and organizing, the laundry, peeling vegetables, kriya yoga, washing dishes. On the other hand, trying to do anything productive while stationary makes me feel physically and mentally fatigued. It has been only increasingly so, the phenomenon is what I've called "computer brain-melt syndrome," but it's also the case for reading, writing or any other activity done sitting idly. This is natural though, sitting is what is the problem. I was never successfully conditioned by society to plant myself and be productive, I never shed the primal inborn impulses to walk, run, jump, climb, dance, roll around, and move my body every which way. When moving I feel intelligent and creative, but when sitting and trying to be productive my brain turns to mush, unless I'm just consuming content, or delivering a stream of consciousness monologue, as I'm doing now. At 11 a psychiatrist recommended I take medication for ADD/ADHD, but my parents refused it, and I somehow managed to drag myself through graduating high school, scarred by the trauma of being forced to go sit at a desk for several hours a day for several years.

As of now solution for myself is to prioritize physical activity, and minimize any time spent sedentary. There is only so much time in the day, and getting in a few hours of walking outside and a few hours of active movement working out or doing yoga. mantra and breathwork at home every day is prioritized. Gradually I am spending less and less time idle except if it's watching useful videos, meditating or sleeping. But I do realize how lucky I am to have the luxury of breaking away, having no commitments and responsibilities that require parking my ass and overclocking my brain on the regular. Since COVID-19 hit I realized I'm actually living the dream! With nowhere to go and nothing I need to do, life has shifted into alignment with my true desires. I enjoy walking more than anyone I know, just spending several hours walking around outside by myself is a great joy and a day well spent. I love the feeling of walking down an empty sidewalk in a beautifully landscaped residential area, seeing the path stretch out into the distance with no one walking towards me. In this sense I'm glad others don't know this joy, because then there would be more people to ruin the serenity and have to dodge on my walks, or these days put on a mask and walk 2 metres over in the grass or street. It's not normal to just stroll around aimlessly for hours, when I tell people what I do they think it's crazy and a waste of time, but it makes me very happy, it feels natural, or the most natural thing to do in my environment.

Human body was designed to move constantly, and spending lots of time sitting (or standing) in place is unhealthy, and will manifest many subtle and not so subtle physical and mental health problems. I have compassion for masses on their asses, because for most of them it is their means of making a living, and for learning, entertainment and productivity. Whether you're reading books, working at a desk, looking at a screen, driving, or using this website, that is all stationary activity, where your body barely moves, it's just sitting there. All the progress we've made in technology, and everything we have to learn comes at the cost of neglecting our bodies, like we're just a brain connected to a computer. Most don't think twice about sitting, it's what they were conditioned to do in school, and most activities that aren't actively doing something with the body means basically sitting around, being sedentary, inactive. All the comforts of modern life I enjoy exist because people spend long hours sitting in front of a screen designing them, and driving the trucks, ships and airplanes that make it all possible.  

So I do see this as a dilemma for the progress humanity, and perhaps some of you also, when so much of life involves being inactive, parking your ass and overclocking your brain. More and more sedentary learning time required for society to function and for people to progress. More and more aspects of live relegated to being done sitting or standing in front of the computer, and it will only get worse. Sitting is the new smoking, but even the doctors who tell you that are chronically sitting much of the time every day. Sitting long hours for work can't be demonized because it's a step up from grueling physical labor, and sitting at a computer at home earning money instead of working as an employee is what many idealize for making a living. If I tell anyone not to sit so much, it feels like I am talking down to them, since I have the privilege of avoiding the sedentary lifestyle, my only limitation in this regard is my own laziness and addiction to consuming media.

But even when I did neglect my body and spend several hours a day sitting at the computer jerking off to porn, marathoning shows or whatever else, going for long walks kept me in a good mood and full of energy. It's why I still have my health after spending what feels like 3 lifetimes worth of sitting in front of the computer myself. Something about just walking, so simple, and I don't feel the same way working out in a gym, running, cycling or anything else, enjoying a good long walk with no definitive route, destination or timing other than the position of the sun is the greatest feeling for me and I think you should try it, and do whatever you can to sit less, move more. You've probably dreamed of what it would be like if you had enough money that you would never need to work again. The better dream is to have a lifestyle where you are free to move your body whenever you want, and conversely to avoid having to sit in front of a screen constantly.

This post written while alternating between sitting over a yoga block, sitting on the edge of the bed, kneeling, squatting, standing with one knee resting on a table, and standing up straight.

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