Staying Healthy When Sitting at a Desk
This year has called for lots of zoom meetings, laptop commitments and virtual everything! For many of us we strive for health and some may be on a journey to become healthier. Many of us are active individuals as it is and sitting at a desk job often presents challenge. For others, we don’t mind working a desk job, but also care about our health. No matter what your thoughts are on this, there are plenty of ways to be healthy when working your desk job!
Start the day with exercise
When you start the day with movement, the body will benefit all day long. It has been proven to help with alertness, increased energy, a better mood, decision making and leads one to make healthier food choices throughout the day. While doing a full cardio or strength training workout is ideal, you may not have much time in the morning. I encourage you to take a quick walk or do a 10-minute home HITT (High intensity interval training) workout. Working out later in the day leaves room for distractions, fatigue and busyness to get in the way. “I’ll do it tomorrow” becomes a common excuse. However, on the flip side, working out after a long day may help you unwind and shed the stress. Regardless, build in exercise and in the morning if possible!
This sounds great, but I’m not a morning person!
If you’re not a morning person then it’s going to take a bit of readjusting, but it is possible to get moving early in the day. Firstly, set yourself up for success by starting the night before. Get a good night’s rest meaning a full 7-9 hours of sleep (if possible). Waking rested will make it much easier to motivate yourself to workout. Further, set your workout gear out the night before and even think about prepping a healthy breakfast. I know you have heard it before, but I will say it again, don’t skip breakfast as it’s the most important meal of the day! Lastly, do exercise you actually enjoy. Find some online channels to follow for great at home work outs or when going to the gym change up the routines each time you go. Keep it fun so you will stay engaged and look forward to your workouts.
As a little tip, I have found that planning my week including my workout routines on Sunday evenings helps hold myself accountable and sets me up for success the entire week to come. I know exactly what to do which days. At that point, it’s just a matter of sticking to the plan.
By working out in the mornings and preparing ahead of time, you are committing to yourself and making health a priority!
Plan to work for an hour or two at a time then take a break. Focus really hard for a couple of hours then get up and move around. Walk around the office or house if you are working from home. If you can get a breath of fresh air, do so! If it’s warm enough, get out in the sun for a bit, take the dog out, etc. A dose of vitamin D through some golden rays is always a bonus!
If you are someone taking calls often, being in touch with clients or employees, schedule some that you can walk and talk. I know this isn’t always possible since we need our notes or laptops for references, but look ahead and see if you can plan one or two each week where you can walk and talk. Exercise and work, talk about being healthy and productive!!
While focusing is easier said than done, make a conscious effort to give your work your full attention. When in an office environment it’s much simpler to eliminate distractions even though it does take some self-discipline. It’s so easy to get distracted thinking about other things at home or something of pressing need with family life. It’s important to recognize and value our life outside of work, but by focusing on work during the normal work day hours, it allows you to leave work at work for the day and come home to be fully present at home as opposed to taking unfinished business with you when you leave. If you work at home for your job, as many of us do during this crazy year we have had, being able to focus on work becomes a bit more challenging. The laundry needs changed over, the kids need help with home-schooling, the dog needs to go out, etc. The list becomes endless if we allow it to be. And if you refrain from doing the tasks around the house, you’re probably thinking about them. Either way, it takes effort to focus on work during the normal work hours. The other tasks can be taken care of after.
Pack or prepare healthy lunches
If you work at an office, packing lunch instead of ordering out is not only friendly to your wallet, but friendly to your waistband, too! Pack some leftovers from the night before, but mix it up by making it into a salad or protein bowl. This keeps things easy and a lunch you’ll look forward to. If you do like to eat out, make health conscious decisions as often as possible. I suggest putting $30-40 dollars’ worth of cash in your wallet before the week starts. When the money runs out, no more eating out- leftovers or packed home lunches it is! This allows you to still eat out, but provides boundaries, too. I find it a great way to have a little enjoyment and hold myself accountable!
Drink lots of water
Pack a large water bottle for the day or set yourself up with one at home. Aim for 6-8 glasses a day and add in some herbal or greens teas. Limit any sugary drinks or ones full of caffeine. It’s better for your mind and less sugary better for the body. If you like citrus flavors, squeeze some lemons or oranges into some water to change up the flavor while providing extra anti-oxidants.
Make sure you don't forget to take care of your body and muscles as you add in these techniques. Try our Osi Magnesium products to relax those sore muscles!
I have started to incorporate all of these tips into my work week and I not only feel physically healthier, but mentally, too! Pick one or two to try out next week. There’s no better time than now as we make our New Year’s resolutions! Can I get a hip-hip hooray for health and happiness as we enter this new year?!
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