Working at a desk may seem impossible to stay and / or get healthy but follow these simple ways and you'll start feeling better before you know it!
1) Take small breaks! Just because you work at a desk job doesn’t mean you are glued to your desk all day. Get up at least once an hour to walk around. Go to the bathroom. I know it can be difficult to walk away from the computer and your work but you'll feel that much more energized to push through the rest of your work day with a positive attitude.
2) Light stretches and some movement right at your desk! You need a quick break more often than every hour. Take 30 seconds to stretch. Touch your toes, do some quick jumping jacks, or even sit ups. It doesn’t take much to get your blood pumping. Get an under-desk elliptical to help get your blood pumping during an easy project. Whatever you can do to move while in place will help your body stay active and healthy.
3) Stay away from the office goodies. It's tempting when pizza is ordered or donuts are brought in the morning, but try opting out of partaking in them. Balance is everything, I'm not saying you can't have those things but swaying away from those type munchies will make you feel better in the long run and you won't have that carb coma afterwards.
4) Plan your snack and meal times. Just as you schedule and plan out the rest of your day (get up, workout, shower), establish when throughout the day you’re going to eat. If you know you like to eat lunch around noon, plan for that. And if you like to have a snack in the late afternoon, plan for that as well. It's all about being prepared so you can conquer the day!
5) Use your time wisely. Just because you work at a desk for eight hours a day doesn’t mean you have to go home and sit in front of the television for another eight hours. Find ways to work active time into your life outside of work. Take a group exercise class, hit the gym early in the morning, or go for a walk with your family in the evening.
6) Meetings on the go! Meetings are the status quo of most office environments. Instead of buckling down for a long meeting, try suggesting that your group take a walking meeting. Walk around the office or even the block while you hash out ideas for your next project. Who knows...with your blood flowing, some great ideas may come together!
7) Lunch breaks are perfect for some movement. It’s tempting to sit and relax on your lunch break. But, by lunch, your body can benefit from a short walk. You don’t even need to go far for it to be effective. Invite coworkers and make a daily routine of it.
8) Alternate between standing and sitting. Some office environments encourage standing at your desk with special desks that allow you to either sit or stand. If your desk doesn’t, don’t be discouraged. Stand when you can. For example, make all phone calls while standing. Try sitting for 30 minutes and then standing for 30 minutes. Stay away from the office goodies. It's tempting when pizza is ordered or donuts are brought in the morning, but try opting out of partaking in them. Balance is everything, I'm not saying you can't have those things but swaying away from those type munchies will make you feel better in the long run and you won't have that carb coma afterwards.
9) Park a little further and skip the elevator ride. It’s easy to let the elevator become part of your daily routine. If you find yourself using it too often, try taking the stairs regularly instead. Also, try parking farther away from the building so you are forced to walk across the parking lot. Little decisions can add up to more physical activity.
10) Make sure you actually eat. Once you hit the ground running, err, working, it can be hard to take a break to actually eat. But it’s important to know your hunger signs and realize that not eating can affect your alertness and productivity. Plus, eating throughout the day can save you from being a big hangry mess once 5 o’clock rolls around. If needed, set an alarm on your phone to remind you to get up and eat something.
11) Focus on real food. Balanced, nutritious food makes us more productive. It keeps you fuller longer and helps your focus. Understand that what you eat will impact your mood and energy level. Think about this the next time you’re feeling hungry and just want to grab a handful of chocolate from your desk drawer. Focus on protein, fiber, healthy fats, fruits and veggies. Planning a menu ahead of time will make it easier to avoid noshing on whatever looks tastiest and quickest in the moment. Don’t buy junk food. Also, make sure to Drink plenty of water. Dehydration can lead to headaches and fatigue, which are both not good for your productivity.