6 Ways to Stay in Shape While You Work

I’ve often joked that the only way I will start exercising in is if we start a P.E. class at work. Since that’s probably not going to happen any time soon there are a few other simple things we can do. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

1. Sit up straight. Having good posture not only makes you appear more confident, but it also has physical benefits, too. It keeps your spine properly aligned, reducing back pain and improves your breathing because your muscles sit where they should—as a bonus, eased breathing keeps you alert and attentive.
2. Sit on an exercise ball. Using an exercise ball helps reinforce good posture while also working your core muscles that go unused in a traditional chair. If you maximize the use of your ball by stretching under your desk and doing mini-workouts, you can burn up to 350 calories per day. But even if you just use it instead of your standard desk chair, you’ll be better off.
3. Avoid doughnuts in the break room. Offering healthier snack alternatives in your office makes clear that you value health as part of your office culture. Cutting back on things like doughnuts—even though they’re delicious—trims caloric intake significantly. Replace doughnuts and other sugary breakfast foods with granola bars and fruit for an equally sweet but markedly more nutritious breakfast.
4. Get up and talk to someone instead of e-mailing. Even if your office is a small one, getting out of your chair and making your way to a colleague’s desk is an easy way to get on your feet and add a little bit of movement to your day. When you sit for too long, your muscle activity stalls and your metabolism slows almost to a halt. Getting up and moving around boosts your calorie-burning rate to three times the sluggish rate when you’re simply sitting at your desk.
5. Don’t forget why the water cooler’s really there. Water is vital to life and health, and chances are, it’s available to you in virtually unlimited proportions right in your office. The water cooler aptly serves as a meeting spot and gossip mill, but remember why it’s really there. Choosing water instead of soda can cut your caloric intake pretty significantly. Plus, drinking those eight glasses of water a day helps keep your body hydrated and healthy.
6. Actually take a lunch break. Sure, you’re busy. It’s sometimes easier to work through lunch (with some help from the vending machine), or forget to eat one altogether. But research suggests going without lunch can leave you frustrated, drained and far less productive.

(via OPEN Forum)

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