Trapped in your office or cubicle all day? If you leave the office feeling stiff and sluggish from spending all day in a chair, you need to get up and move around. By following some simple tips to create a more active workday, you can stay healthy at your desk.
Try a Pedometer
You probably know you should walk around every so often throughout your day, but how often are you actually moving and for how long? Getting a simple pedometer or a fitness tracker can help you track your steps through the day. It will help keep you motivated by showing your progress. It?ll also prevent you from believing you?re moving more than you really are.
Get a Better Chair
By now you?ve probably come across the advice to sit on a fitness ball at your desk. Did you roll your eyes or wonder how on Earth anyone could possibly stay balanced on one of those things? You?re not alone. That?s why many manufacturers created exercise ball chairs. You get most of the benefits of sitting on an exercise ball, along with four wheels for easy movement and sometimes arm rests. Most of the popular ones cost less than $100.
Walk While You Type
If you need to work on a laptop most of the day, you might consider a treadmill desk. These desks are built specifically to sit over the top of a treadmill. They allow space enough for a laptop and other necessities at standing height. Using one of these you can walk, jog, or stand while working. You may even do interval training throughout your workday. Of course, not everyone had the option of lugging a treadmill and specialty desk into their cubicle. These tend to be popular for those with personal office space.
Stand at Your Desk
This one is a little easier for anyone to do. Instead of sitting all day, intersperse periods of standing while you work. You can try a standing desk, but be aware. Standing for too long may also cause you problems, such as lower back pain. Consider creating a setup that allows you to switch between sitting and standing during your day.
Get in some Deskercise
You can tons of effective exercises at your desk or in your office. Some of them don?t even look terribly silly. You?re probably familiar with quite a few of these, but perhaps haven?t considered doing them at work. For example, ?The Pencil Pinch,? involves pinching an imaginary pencil between your shoulder blades for a few seconds per repetition. It?s a simple way to help counteract that stooped desk-posture.
Don?t Forget your Kegels
Ladies –and gentlemen, too– you can work your pelvic floor muscles at work and no one will even notice. The benefits of practicing Kegels can vary, but most people should see improvement in urinary continence by working these muscles. For women, adding squats can further aid in pelvic floor control. If you pee a little when you sneeze, then Kegels and squats during your workday may help.
Certainly not every one of these tips will work best for you. If you can?t purchase a treadmill desk, you may find free plans to build your own online. If you have physical or space limitations with any certain exercises, you may use one of several Web-based exercise finders to look for an exercise based on the body part you want to workout. As with any exercise or health changes, consult with your physician before trying these tips to make sure they?re safe and appropriate for you.