Tag Archives: App

Blob alert! Time to stand up!

Popular culture’s black-hat villain smoking a cigarette was also probably sitting down.

If you haven’t already heard, you’re about to be enlightened: “Sitting is the new smoking.”

That declaration comes from Dr. James Levine, director of the Mayo Clinic-Arizona State University Obesity Solutions Initiative and inventor of the treadmill desk, and it’s echoed by all kinds of experts. So much so that Better Homes & Gardens’ suggested New Year’s resolution to not sit so much be realized with a get-up timer (who knew people made such resolutions? Better Homes & Gardens, that’s who).

Yes, we live in a world where we buy automatic dishwashers and riding lawn mowers and then we invest in health club memberships to get more exercise. And now we have to be reminded to stand up because sitting too much will kill us. Click here for all the ways sitting too much is shortening your life but here’s the Cliff Notes version: Cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, depression and more.

I looked down on so-called chronic sitters because, I thought, I stand up plenty. I won’t be one of Pixar’s blobby “Wall-E” humans watching TV from dawn to dusk and moving with a hover-round, no sirree! I own a two-story house, which forces me to take the stairs regularly. My laundry room is not on the same floor as the bedroom closets. I run a couple times a week. I walk the dog, goll darnit! We don’t even own a riding lawn mower!

But it turns out my arrogant I-don’t-sit-too-much attitude was based in fiction.

I’m too sedentary, too.

activity appAccording to the folks who know, we should be getting out of our seats at least once an hour. I got an iWatch for my birthday, and one of the functions automatically loaded on the watch is the Apple Activity app, which dutifully reminds me to stand up once an hour by gently tapping my wrist and then it records my results (it also records how many calories I burn a day by moving and how many minutes a day I exercise).

Since Dec. 23, I’ve achieved the goal to stand at least once an hour 12 times a day exactly six days. That’s six out of 27 days or less than 25 percent of the time.


What an eye-opener.

Well, the good news is that now I have a standard to beat. The competitor in me can reach (quite literally) for better stats.

And even if you don’t have an iWatch, you can download the Stand Up! app on iTunes and Google Play for the daily reminders, minus the gentle wrist tap. You have Better Homes & Gardens to thank for that tip.

If you can wade through the rant against the White Sox, you’ll be rewarded with news you can use. Promise.

The mailbox will have to be fumigated after this unwelcome intrusion.

Look what I got in the mail today.


Part of my profile for this blog clearly states I root for the Minnesota Twins and any team playing against the White Sox. “The Ultimate White Sox Experience” for me would include a thorough butt-kicking of the Sox by the Twins, followed by a fireworks show celebrating the Twins division championship.

Alas, that’s not going to happen this year. But the last thing I need is the White Sox rubbing salt into the wound. Ouch. (I managed to catch the end of the Twins game on Tuesday when they beat the Indians in extra innings. In front of an almost empty stadium. It was that or Oprah Radio at that time of night. That’s the high point of Twins games lately.)

But I have recourse!

It’s a cool app called MailStop.

Pick up your cell phone and look for it now.

I’ll wait. It’s that cool. Go ahead.

It’s free. You really have no excuse.

Got it?

With this app, all you have to do is take a picture of the mailing portion of your junk mail, and MailStop — via Catalog Choice — will automatically notify the sender that you don’t want to receive their junk anymore!

Amazing, huh?

I downloaded it and set up an account a couple weeks ago in order to stop the increasing influx of baby-related mail addressed to my Beloved (he loves his adult children, but he doesn’t want any more of them!). Somehow last summer, Someone Who Knows got tipped off that my husband was [looking side to side for eavesdroppers] expecting. We started getting fliers from Best Baby Registry and magazine from Baby Talk. I wrote about this surprising and somewhat disturbing development here.

Let me emphasize: My husband is not pregnant.

And neither am I.

And we have no intention of taking that step.


So when I heard about MailStop, I seized on the opportunity to end the flow of car seat- and lactation-related mailings to my house.

And I got my first email today from Catalog Choice, a forwarded message from Carter’s, “the makers of clothing essentials for children”:

Thank you for contacting us about your mailing list information.  We’ve updated your record as you requested, but you may receive a few more emails/mailings from us until the change goes into effect.  If we can be of any further assistance, please let us know.  Thank you!

Is that a clever app or what? Less annoying junk mail. And all it takes is a few seconds to take a picture before you pitch it away.

I can hardly wait for the White Sox to send me a deferential email about removing me from their mailing list. Keep your smug winning record to yourself, thank you.