Bloomberg Business Week Magazine (Businessweek.com) ranked the country’s laziest states based on five years of data (2004 – 2008) from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics American Time Use Survey, which averages the time spent each day on various activities across the population ages 15 and older, including people who did not do the activity at all.
They evaluated the amount of time spent on physically inactive pursuits, such as sleeping, watching television, relaxing, thinking, socializing, playing board games, and surfing the internet. They considered these metrics against factors such as time spent exercising and playing sports in each state, time spent working, and the state’s median age. The final ranking only includes states where residents spend more free time doing sedentary activities than the U.S. average.
States on the East Coast are heavily represented on the list. Climate and age play a factor in slowing down the pace of life, as does the local lifestyle.
Of the top 20, Maine came in 16th.
Even though Maine offers a lot of outdoor sports, residents spend more time than most doing sedentary activities. The magazine cut us a break by saying that it might partly be because of the low temperatures during the winter.
The magazine states that Mainers sleep an average of 8 hours 50 minutes a night. Not necessarily a bad thing, we all do need our rest.
That we spend an average of 2 hours 34 minutes watching TV. This is more than in our house, but then again we do not have any cable.
We spend 14 minutes relaxing and thinking. I am thinking of how I can relax and think more.
We spend 41 minutes socializing. This makes me happy since I greatly value my friendships.
We spend 3 hours 22 minutes working. By working they do not mean at your job but work that you do during your leisure time, like in your yard or home.
Our median age is 41.5. That makes us America’s oldest state. There are a lot of retirees in Maine and not many young families. I think it is because it is hard to find jobs here out of college, especially ones that pay decently.
Our obesity ranking is 29 or 25.8 percent. Ouch.
We ranked second for time spent playing games, such as board games, cards, puzzles, and computer games. I played a board game with Colby last night. Mouse Trap – do you remember that one?
Maine residents also spend the most time using the computer and surfing the internet for leisure. Guess I am not the only one blogging.
So how does it feel to be lazy? Honestly, not that bad. Isn’t leisurely time supposed to be lazy? Okay, so the high obesity number is not good and we do need to exercise more. But I think it is great that we make time to play games, spend time with our friends, have great looking yards and are well rested. To me, these are the things that are a part of the recipe for happiness.