Work out while you work
FYI, there’s a lion by the water cooler, so you’ll want to hit the ground running. Sound familiar? Of course not – well, maybe the lingo. But as a rule, we no longer run from predators, hunt animals, or walk most of the day in search of shelter while carrying all our belongings. Most of us sit at a desk. We work hard, but unless the air conditioning is broken, we don’t break a sweat.
And not everyone has time to make it to the gym. Sometimes we work late. Sometimes we’re just being pulled in other directions. And sometimes the last thing we want to do after work is something that actually feels a whole lot like more work. So, what can we do?
Employers to the rescue! Workout classes offered at work are a win-win for employers and employees. Exercising on site has huge benefits for productivity and overall employee health. There are many companies creating inspiring exercise-at-work programs that make it easy for employees to schedule workout sessions in their workday.
Maybe these companies can inspire you or your boss to hop on the trend. In the meantime, you still have many options when it comes to working out at the office.
- Walk and talk. “I’m lucky to have a treadmill in my office,” says Paul Markovich, the CEO of Blue Shield of California. “Taking steps while on calls has been a great way to get exercise and stay sharp when working through complex problems.” But if you don’t have the space, hook up your Bluetooth and take the call on the go. Walking gets blood flowing to the brain faster and can help you think.
- Deskercise. There are a ton of at-your-desk exercises that you can do during your workday. With some, no one will even know you’re exercising (kegels, anyone?). Try some chair dips or stapler curls. Or just tighten your abs or squeeze your glutes and hold. And don’t underestimate the benefits of simple stretches!
- Arm up. Need a prop staring you in the face to get motivated? Ditch your chair and sit on a stability ball. Get an under-desk bike. Use barbells as paperweights; you’ll be more tempted to lift them.
Can’t exercise at work? How about during the workday?
- Ditch the car. The weather is beautiful in California, so why not bike or walk to work or the train station? If your commute is too far, try simply parking farther away from your office. Exercise is a great way to jump-start your day.
- Use your lunch hour. Exercise at lunch. Or better yet, exercise with one of your co-workers so you can keep each other motivated. If you’re looking for ways to exercise at work, chances are you are not alone.
- Walk everywhere. Take as many meetings as possible in person. It’s good to be up and active, and an in-person meeting usually ends up saving time!
- Take the stairs. You’ve heard this before. Now, put it into practice. Take the long way (speed walking if you can’t spare the time) and always take the stairs.
Working out at work can give you a boost of confidence as well as a boost in your overall mood. You’ll have more energy, a more positive attitude, and less stress. Plus, you’re taking something off your to-do list for when you get home. Get as many workout sessions in while you’re at the office, and you’ll be a healthier and happier you.
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