Sitting at a desk all day, every day at work may not seem like a big deal if your job keeps you busy, but have you ever considered the health risks that come along with being sedentary? Work can overwhelm you to the point that all you want to do in the evening is collapse in front of the TV and eat a good meal, so not everyone has a solid exercise routine. If you find yourself in this position, try out some exercises at your desk so you can take care of your body while you work.
- Take a Walk
Walking is a simple activity you can work into your daily routine without worrying about getting weird looks from your coworkers. The next time you need to ask someone down the hall about something, get up and walk to them instead of emailing or calling. Your body will appreciate the movement, and you never know if you’ll see a friend and get wrapped up in a good conversation that’ll make your whole day better.
- Tap Your Toes
You can tap your toes underneath your desk to get your blood flow pumping, but next time you’re on a break, try this soccer warm-up instead. In your cubicle — or a bathroom stall if you don’t have much privacy — alternate lifting and tapping toes to the height of a small trash can to wake yourself up. Toe tapping, high knees, whatever you grew up calling it, this movement will improve your calves and stretch unused muscles.
- Do Some Squats
Squats are great to do at work because not only are you getting in a mini workout, but you’re also taking up little space while you do them. For a total set, aim for 15 squats. When you’re done, go back to that spreadsheet that’s begun to take over your whole morning. Do your best to complete your squats once each hour, and you’ll get the chance to admire that sore, accomplished feeling that comes with sitting down in a desk chair after doing some great squats.
- Try Vertical Push-Ups
Vertical push-ups may sound easy, but just give them a try. Get in push-up formation while standing, then lean forward to the nearest wall. Complete your push-ups to strengthen chest muscles with no additional stress on your spine. Again, try to take an exercise break once an hour. Maybe switch things up and do a few push-ups against the wall and then the floor, if you have the opportunity. Anything to knock some minutes off the many hours you spend sitting around all day.
Next time you’re sitting at work and find yourself shocked that you’ve been working on that presentation for five straight hours, take a second to give yourself a break. Do some simple exercises to get your body moving. Even taking a walk down the hall and back will improve your energy and how you feel, and when you get back to your desk, you’ll feel ready to tackle whatever the workday has to throw at you.