You might think your brain and eyes are the only aspects of your body that are suffering from sitting at your desk for hours on end, but that would be an understatement. In fact, your entire body is affected, and research appears to confirm that desk jobs are suggesting we are ageing at a much faster rate.
I know, between commuting to work and sitting at your desk, there aren’t many opportunities to not be in a sitting position for an extended period of time, but many studies and experts suggest that interrupting your sitting time by small exercises can seriously reduce health risks. Experts even state that the longer and the more intense the movement, the better. But these don’t have to be 10 or 15 minutes but can be as short as 1 minute.
Many of us spend up to 10 hours sat at our desk on a daily basis! Shocking, right? But that’s not all -remember that on top of that, we also sit down at the table to have dinner, and unwind on our sofas to watch some Netflix which shows that sitting, literally, never ends…
As you can imagine, I struggled to find any arguments that supported that sitting for a long period of time is actually good for you, which means that ultimately you do need to get up frequently and do small exercises, and here are 4 tips you can adopt at work to stay more active (and live longer!).
Why not sit on an exercise ball?
Using an exercise ball as your chair will not only engage your core but also assist in keeping a good posture, and keep your body active throughout the day. The idea of sitting on the ball versus a traditional office chair is that it forces you constant muscle engagement and increases calorie burning via balancing your weight on the ball throughout the day! A normal chair doesn’t sound that special now, does it?
Or how about a sneaky leg lift under the desk?
We’re all about getting some subtle and easy-to-do exercises in the office here at TWC, and doing leg lifts under the desk with small ankle weights is one of our favourites. Get yourself some adjustable ankle weights and put them on 2 or 3 times a day for about 15 minutes to do a few reps. And if your boss isn’t one to tell you off, why not wear them around the office when you top up your coffee?
Meetings inside? Nah…
Forget about meetings in stuffy rooms with artificial light, instead take them outside! Not only is the weather getting much better, but making a phone call or catching up with your manager whilst taking a walk around the block will not only break up your day at the office but also allow you to be active! Your colleagues aren’t convinced about your new meeting idea? Remind them that it will be clocking their steps on their Fitbits (and walk off those two chocolate digestives they’ve just scoffed with their teas).
Get everyone to get up, and stretch (hell yeah!)
No one will blink an eye if you get up and do some casual stretches at your office, and they will like it even more if you invite them to join! Staying active whilst at work can be very simple – include a few reps of shoulder raises, neck stretches and even deep breathing exercises. Who knows, you might even start a fun company culture thing going.
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