Is having a desk job placing more of a strain on your body than it used to? If yes, then it’s time to integrate some activity into your daily routine and keep it that way. Here are 10 things you can do to get some physical exercise while you’re at work.
Studies have shown for a long time now that having a desk job, or a job that doesn’t imply much movement, has detrimental effects on both your mind and body. What they have also confirmed is that having at least 30 minutes a day set aside for exercise will do wonders for you.
In this article, we’re going into detail about the 10 things you can do to make sure you’re getting those 30 minutes in even while at work. So, if keeping your mind and body healthy sounds like something you’re interested in, scroll down.
10 Things To Do to Keep Active at Work
Replace Your Desk
Sitting down all day will result in some unpleasant side effects later on by affecting your legs, your back, and so much more. Have your workplace switch your sitting desk with a standing one. This way you could pace around a bit, stretch your legs, and you’ll be ready to move faster if someone calls for you. Or, to spice things up even more, you could opt for a treadmill desk and get a few miles in every day.
Use Work-Friendly Exercise Tools
We know that not everyone would find the idea of a standing desk appealing, which is why our next suggestion is to get exercise tools that you can use at your desk. And even though you can get the best under-desk elliptical to exercise your legs, that could lull you into a sense of “I’m not just sitting idly, I’m exercising.” and have you forget about other important body parts. So other than leg-focused tools, try to go for exercise balls, or yoga mats as well so that you can take care of your whole body. Pedal while you write, bounce on your new ‘chair’, or use your yoga mat while you work on your laptop for some basic poses.
Switch Up Your Route
There are a few ways to go about this step. If you are approximately within walking distance of your office, just do it. Walk to work, or even bike if you’re in more of a rush. If you’re not within walking distance, do one of two things. Either get off one stop early, if you’re using public transportation or park further if you’re driving. This way you’ll get your blood pumping just before starting your day and it will keep you more alert first thing in the morning (or whenever your shift starts).
Sure, it feels good to dress well, but you can also choose to dress more comfortably while respecting your office’s dress code. It’s only natural that if your clothes allow you to move freely, you’ll be more inclined to be active throughout the day. It’s a good thing that t-shirts are in for business casual right now.
Take the Stairs
If you work in a building that has multiple floors, take advantage of the stairs! Take them whenever possible, and although you might feel like it’s too hard at first, after only one week you won’t be able to feel them anymore and you’ll have a greater amount of energy.
Waiting? Exercise it out!
Is the copier taking too long? Were you given 20 minutes of wait time before you can enter the meeting room? Does your food need to be in the microwave for a couple of minutes? Walk it out. Take a lap around the office, use the stairs, or even meditate. Time will pass faster and you’ll have done your body a quick favor.
This is something that can be done without much effort and just about anywhere you might be. Whether you’re at your desk or taking your lunch break, take a few minutes to stretch out your legs, your arms, and especially your neck and shoulders. Maybe even throw in a little massage to release some of the tension build-ups.
Offer to Get Lunch
Not to pay for lunch, but to go get it. For this step, it’s even better if your coworkers can’t decide on the same place to buy from and you have to move around a bit more. We’re kidding, of course, but offering to do this will not only keep you active and get your blood in motion after sitting around all day, but it will also get you bonus points in the popularity aspect.
Make Meetings Active
Most jobs that have frequent meetings just have their employees go from the chair at their desk to the chair in the meeting room, so there’s not much activity there. But you can have walking meetings, standing meetings, or meetings in more informal environments, where you can stand or sit a bit differently than you would on a chair. If you’re the supervisor surprise everyone with a change in pace or scenery, and if not, try using frequent suggestions (be careful not to become annoying as you might get the opposite).
Don’t Call, Go Over
Need something from your coworkers upstairs? Have to return something to someone on the other side of the floor? Go visit them to solve the problem, instead of calling or sending an e-mail. You’ll get some activity out of it and you might even chat for a bit, creating a pleasant work relationship and overall environment.
Track Your Progress
For some people, tracking their progress works as a great motivator, which is why so many people have accessories that display how many steps and miles they’ve accumulated over the course of one day. Get a tracking device and set realistic goals for yourself each day, and you might notice that you’ll have doubled your stamina in just a few months.
Always Stay Active
Now that you know what to add to your daily routine to increase your activity and maintain your health, go put those suggestions into action. To get the best results, remember to couple physical activity with mental activity (such as meditation), and with proper meals throughout the day. Yes, that also includes hydration.