Recent research revealed that sitting at your desk all day does more than just tiring you out. Physical inactivity can increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, breast and colon cancer, coronary heart disease – and can even shorten your life expectancy. Luckily, there are several exercises you can do from the comfort of your desk that will slim you down and wake you up, because no one wants to feel a mid-afternoon nap coming on when there’s four hours to 5 o’clock. Take a walk break – Taking breaks throughout the day is critical to your productivity, and it can also help wake you up. If you’re feeling lethargic, take a quick 5-10 minute walk around the block or office complex. You’ll return to your desk with renewed energy – we’re sure of it.
Skip an email…and walk – Instead of hashing out an issue or brainstorming about a design over email, walk on over to your colleague’s desk and talk in person. It’s likely to be more beneficial, and it’ll get you up and walking.
Schedule a “moving” meeting – During your next brainstorming session, move your meeting room tables and chairs against the wall so you have a big open space. Find some stress or bouncy balls and have them around to stimulate creativity. Instead of being cramped together on a table, encourage your teammates to walk around the room, toss the ball, and perhaps even play catch.
Invest in an exercise ball – Trade your chair in for an exercise ball to improve your balance. It will also help strengthen your core, improve your flexibility – and, it requires more energy so you’ll burn more calories.
Take a mini-break – At the end of each hour, perhaps on the :55, get up from your chair and walk around your office floor. Or, find yourself a conference room where you can stretch and move around. This will help lower your blood sugar, cholesterol, and triglycerides.
Walk during a phone call – Next time you’re on a long phone call, make a point to walk around and move your legs while you’re talking. If you don’t need to take notes, you may consider a Bluetooth earpiece or a good pair of headphones so you can really get away from the desk to get some exercise.
Create multiple workstations – Even if you have an L-shaped desk in your cubicle, you have some “wiggle room” to create extra workstations. The idea here is to keep moving and adjust your environment (even if just a little) throughout the day. This will keep your mind fresh and your posture a bit different so you can better stay awake throughout the day.
Calf-raise your way to the copier – Take your walking up a notch by doing calf raises next time you need to get up. While walking to the cafeteria, copier, or even to the restroom, lift your heels off the ground and touch them to your calf each time you take a step.
Take the stairs – Whether you work on the second floor or the 10th, opt for the stairs instead of the elevator. You can start small – perhaps by taking the stairs in the morning, then gradually work up to avoiding the elevator all together. Trust us: your leg muscles and energy level will thank you. These nine exercises are a great way to keep you in shape, even if you’re sitting at a desk all day. Try to implement at least a few into your everyday life and you’ll feel better and have more energy in no time flat!
About the Author:
Jennifer Carter is a marketing guru for clients of Outbounding.com. She works far too many hours, but has made a personal goal of eliminating Sunday from her work week. Her vision for the colder months includes one hour of yoga 4 times each week, homemade soup, saving for retirement, and time off work. She also believes that a nose job can transform and empower a soul.
* This is a partnered post