Working Hard, or Hardly Working
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, only an estimated 21.7% of Americans hit the recommended mark for physical activity in any given week. Federal guidelines suggest that 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise (or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise), in addition to resistance training twice a week, is the ideal composition of an active lifestyle. But with schedules being crazier than ever, PTA meetings, Tae Kwon Do lessons, soccer games, backyard barbecues, and full-time jobs, who has any extra time to devote to working out. Believe it or not, the secret to meeting those guidelines might just be in hidden in that last activity. Below you will find a list of 3 suggested physical activities (stretching, aerobic, and resistance) that you can use to become more active while you are at work. And the best part is, you don’t have to sneak out of the office while your boss is on that conference call.
1. Desktop Yoga
You don’t need to perfect the Downward-Facing Dog or Hero pose to get the benefits of yoga. When you start feeling tension in your body, simply take a few minutes to do some simple stretches right at your desk. Things like simple wrist and finger stretching or reaching high and bending to the side, will relieve some of the daily stress your body undergoes sitting all day.
2. Run Out for Lunch
No, this is not an invitation to hit up a local drive-thru or grab a lunch on the go from a nearby chain restaurant. This literally means running out for lunch. And it certainly doesn’t have to be running. Even if it is just a walk with a few co-workers, adding this to your daily routine will already have you reaching the goal of 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic exercise. Pack an extra outfit and some athletic shoes in your bag for the day and do a quick change as lunchtime approaches. Then you can hit the pavement.
3. What’s Your Office Max?
When it comes to resistance training we tend to think of big muscled guys throwing around weights and bragging about their big muscles using the heaviest weight possible. But the truth is, for optimal resistance training you don’t need much weight, you just need something that will cause resistance. The next time the office printer runs out of paper don’t wait for Bill from accounting to refill it. Go grab a new box from the supply room yourself and remember to lift with your knees. You can even take the long way back to the workroom. Bonus points for any additional exercises you can do while on that particular task (think lunges, bicep curls, overhead presses, etc.)
These are just a few ideas on how to be more active at work, and you can probably think of dozens ofmore ways yourself. So the next time you clock in, remember that your job doesn’t have to be just investment portfolios and spreadsheets. It can also be an opportunity to invest in the most important thing in your own life, your health. That’s why at our office, we care about how you take care of yourself and what we can offer to help you on a personalized journey towards a healthier life.