It’s estimated that around 60% of the population spends at least six hours each day sitting down, and one of the driving forces behind this statistic is the fact that many people work office jobs. Being seated for so long each day contributes to a whole host of negative effects that include increased risks for heart attack, cancer, and obesity. Fortunately, you don’t have to be confined to a life of poor health just because of your desk job. These tips will help you stay motivated and develop a fitness plan that works with your schedule, even when office life gets hectic.
- Break exercise into smaller chunks.
One of the most commons reasons office workers don’t exercise is because they think that there’s simply not enough time in the day, but this the lamest excuse in the book! By breaking your fitness routine into smaller chunks, during lunch or other breaks, for instance, you can fit your workouts around your pre-existing schedule. There’s no evidence that multiple, small workouts are less effective than one long workout, so get moving when it’s convenient for you.
- Consider biking to work.
Biking to work may not be realistic for you if you’ve got a 20-mile commute, but for people who live close to their jobs, this is a great way to sneak in some exercise before and after the work day. Plus, biking places helps reduce your carbon footprint, so it keeps you and the planet healthy.
- Pack a lunch.
Going out for lunch may be an easy option for busy office workers, but bringing your food from home can help keep your fitness in check. Most people opt for fast food when eating out at work, and as you know, the nutritional value of that stuff is dubious at best. By making your own lunches, you have more control over what you’re putting in your body, and if you make smart choices, you should see your waistline respond favorably.
- Turn your desk into a gym.
If you’re so pressed for time that you can’t even afford a 10-minute walk around the office, don’t despair—there are still plenty of ways to sneak in some fitness while staying plopped in front of the computer. Keep some small hand weights or resistance bands and break them out for a few reps between answering email and sending reports. For a real workout, switch your desk chair with a stability ball—this will give your core a workout without any conscious effort on your part.
- Get your coworkers involved.
Getting fit can be a real chore when you’re doing it alone, but when you’ve got a group of other people suffering along with you, it can be downright enjoyable. Chances are you’re not the only one in the office that’s looking to make health improvements, so recruit your coworkers and use one another as a support system. It’s unrealistic to expect to feel motivated all the time, and it’s during these down times that you’ll be happy to have a friend dragging you along kicking and screaming to some running and jumping.