Do you work in an office job? Spend a lot of time sitting at a desk during the day?
Sometimes it can be tough to be as active and healthy as you like when you work in an office. I know that since I’ve moved from the Plant to an office building, it takes much more effort to get in enough steps through the day.
But I’ve learned there are actually several strategies for keeping fit in the office that really work! I’m excited to share my 5 simple hacks for keeping fit in the office with you!
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Several months ago, I moved from working in an industrial Plant to a corporate office environment and as you can probably imagine, the transition was very challenging!
I had to deal with so many changes. I went from wearing flame-resistant clothing, steel-toed boots and a hard hat every day to wearing skirts, blouses, dress shoes, and my hair down. There are coworkers who have known me for years who now think that I am unrecognizable!
But one of the biggest changes in working in an office was realizing that I am not as active as I used to be. In my old position, I had to leave my desk to go to the control room, walk around the plant facilities, and attend meetings in the training center. Now, if I don’t have a meeting to attend, I spend most of my time in my office, at my desk.
The good news is that I’ve come up with some hacks for keeping fit in the office – these 5 tips will help you increase your daily steps and eat healthier!
Everyone knows that it’s important to get enough water during the day: Some say go for 8 glasses while others say to drink as many ounces as your body weight.
But here’s where the hack comes in – the more water you drink, the more trips you’ll take to the water fountain and the bathroom – and therefore, you’ll take more steps during the day!
I have a large reusable water bottle that I use and tend to refill at least once a day. It is an easy way to get me up and away from my desk.
If you need more encouragement, Diatta from Femme Fitale Fit Club has a fantastic infusion water bottle that has markers showing you your progress during the day!
Hate the taste of water? You can add a variety of fruits to your water to create an infused experience.
Too much work? Stur Water Enhancer is a more natural version of Crystal Light that you can add to your water – it’s non-GMO, made from stevia, and has no artificial colors or flavors.
They say sitting is the new smoking. With our increasingly sedentary lifestyles, we sleep in our beds, we sit/lounge on the couch, at the dinner table, in meetings, and in our cars on the road.
But most of all, we sit at our desks…and it’s not good!
Have you heard about standing desks? There are several styles in the market and they are growing in popularity for good reason! Standing desks have been shown to:
But you don’t need a standing desk to stand at your desk – you can stand up at your regular desk whenever you want! Every so often during the day, I’ll stand up at my desk in front of my computer for a few minutes. I may be reading a document or writing an email, but I’m giving my hips a break from sitting!
Standing up and walking around while on a phone call or conference is another easy way to keep active.
And while you’re standing, take the opportunity to do a few stretches. Here are some great ideas for runners:
Don’t worry if people think you look silly. Your hips will thank you!
If you’re eating takeout food every day at work…stop!
Now that I work in an office, I have the luxury of having a cafeteria downstairs and a food truck right outside. Not to mention there are several restaurants close by that serve lunch. The convenience is hard to beat, but unfortunately, the food isn’t the healthiest in the world.
That’s why a great hack for keeping fit is to make sure you always have access to healthy food in order to avoid the surrounding temptations. Here’s how to do it:
Yes, sometimes you have to bite the bullet and get a slice of cake for your coworker’s birthday or go out for Chinese food for lunch, but don’t use it as an excuse to go off the rails!
Another great hack to increase your daily steps is to avoid all shortcuts in the office! As long as you keep an eye on the clock, there’s no reason why you can’t take the scenic route and benefit your health at the same time!
If you drive into work, park your car as far as away from your building as possible. I do the same when I get home…within reason (parking in my neighborhood is awful!).
If you have the ability, consider taking public transportation to work to add more steps to your day. On the week of a snowstorm this winter, I took the subway to work and it was great to get nearly 5,000 steps before 6 am! Here’s an extra tip – stand, don’t sit while on the train!
Another easy way to get more steps is to take the steps! I only take the elevator if I’m in a rush to a meeting, which isn’t very often. Of course, if your personal health situation makes this difficult, do what’s most reasonable for you.
And if you have a network printer on your floor, why not print out to the machine that’s farthest away from your desk? Every little bit helps!
Do you use a Fitbit or other activity tracker? Join work week challenges with your coworkers to give yourself some extra motivation!
Does your company have a corporate wellness program? They are absolutely fantastic and are encouraging employees across the country to get out of their chairs and become stronger advocates for their own health!
I’m fortunate to work at a company where we have a very vibrant wellness program and I can tell you that it has absolutely helped me to stay healthy in and out of the office. Here are some examples of what wellness programs may offer you:
Through my company’s wellness program, I have taken several fitness classes at lunch and after work, participated in races and walking challenges, attended health fairs, and received (awesome) counseling from a dietitian. Find out if your company has similar offerings, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming more fit and healthy in your office!
What steps do you take to keep fit when working in an office?