Active lifestyles are essential even at desk jobs, where sitting all day can lead to various health issues like diabetes, poor posture, hip and back problems, and heightened stress levels. Additionally, prolonged sitting can reduce productivity and energy. However, it’s possible to counter these negative effects and maintain activity throughout your workday. Here are the top 5 ways to stay active at your desk job:
Sitting at your desk all day can cause the following health problems:
- The pancreas will produce more insulin leading to diabetes.
- Your blood flows slower causing your muscles to burn less fat running the risk of fatty acids clogging your heart.
- Digestion issues
- Poor posture
- Hip and back problems
- Increased stress levels
- Decreases productivity and energy
Use A Stand-Up Desk
Using a standing or adjustable desk allows you to work while standing, which can improve your posture and increase blood circulation. Slowly build up to a full day of standing to prevent shoulder and back pain. Standing desks can be custom made or created by elevating your computer. They are becoming just as popular as conventional desks.
Sit On An Exercise Ball
Using an exercise ball or yoga ball in place of a chair will engage your back and abdominal muscles. Engaging your core will burn more calories than sitting on a traditional office chair. A strong core will help maintain good posture and strengthen your leg muscles when attempting to balance.
Use Exercise Equipment At Your Desk
Bring ankle weights to work to discreetly perform leg lifts under your desk. Do a few reps of leg raises each hour to burn calories and tone your calves and thighs. You can also find a mini exercise bike that will fit under almost any desk. Many can switch from low impact to high impact for strength and toning.
Take A Walk
If you have a scheduled conference call or meeting, stay active by using your Bluetooth and walking outside. You’ll likely be so engaged in your session that you won’t even realize how many miles you’ve actively walked.
Take Advantage Of Your Lunch Break
Sign up for a gym membership at a fitness center near your office. Many offer quick 30-minute exercise classes making it convenient when short on time. A short calisthenics workout will increase your productivity and happiness levels. Studies have shown that those who performed a 30-60 minute workout on their lunch break had a performance boost of 15%. It can also improve mental performance and the ability to meet deadlines. Working out during your lunch can prevent the afternoon energy slump.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I incorporate physical activity into my workday?
There are several ways to incorporate physical activity into your workday, even if you have a desk job. You can take a walk during your lunch break, stand up and stretch every hour, or even do some basic strength and balance exercises like squats, desk push-ups, wall sits, calf raises, tree pose, and chair pose. You can also keep small hand weights or a resistance band at your desk for bicep curls, lateral raises, rows, and overhead presses.
What are some exercises I can do at my desk?
There are several exercises you can do at your desk to stay active throughout the day. Some examples include desk push-ups, chair squats, leg raises, and shoulder shrugs. You can also try doing some yoga poses like tree pose or chair pose. You can find more examples of desk exercises online.
What are some ways to break up long periods of sitting?
Sitting for long periods of time can be harmful to your health. To break up long periods of sitting, you can take a quick walk around the office, stretch your legs, or even do some basic exercises like squats or lunges. You can also try using a standing desk or taking a standing break every hour.
What are some healthy snacks I can keep at my desk?
Keeping healthy snacks at your desk can help you stay energized and focused throughout the day. Some examples of healthy snacks include fresh fruit, raw vegetables, nuts, and seeds. You can also try keeping some low-fat yogurt or hummus in the fridge for a quick and healthy snack.
How can I stay motivated to stay active at work?
Staying motivated to stay active at work can be challenging, but there are several things you can do to help. You can set goals for yourself, find a workout buddy, or even join a fitness challenge at work. You can also try using a fitness tracker or app to help you stay on track.
What are some benefits of staying active during the workday?
Staying active during the workday can have several benefits for your health and well-being. It can help you maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease, and improve your mood and energy levels. It can also help you stay focused and productive at work.