It is no doubt that long commutes and even longer work days create an environment of inactivity. Sedentary lifestyles, such as a desk jobs, increase the risk of obesity, Type 2 Diabetes, lower back pain, and cancer. It is imperative for the modern worker to maintain a healthy weight and get adequate exercise. Below are ways to maintain health and fitness at the comfort of your desk.
1. Drink Plenty of Water
It is important to maintain a good level of hydration. The human body consists of 60% water and is responsible for regulation of body temperature, digestion, fat removal, and proper organ function. The average American needs approximately 8-10 8 oz. servings of water a day to maintain proper hydration.
When you are busy, steer clear of sugars, packaged and/ fast foods that zap your energy and pack on the pounds. Try to maintain a diet that consists of fresh fruit, vegetables, and lean protein. Try a garden salad with grilled chicken and a side of fruit.
Sitting at a desk all day can increase muscular tension and pain in the neck, shoulders, wrists, lower back, and ankles. By taking a quick five minute break to stretch can help your whole body to feel better and more energetic. Stretch should be held for 15 to 20 seconds each without pain.
4. Strength Training
Most strengthening workouts usually occur in the gym, many exercises can be completed while sitting at a desk.
- Calves (Seated Heel Raises): While seated, start with feet flat on the ground. Lift heels off the ground while maintaining contact on the floor with the toes. Perform exercise 20 times.
- Knees (Seated Kicks): While seated, gently kick one leg straight out in front of you for 3 seconds and gently lower back to the ground. Perform this exercise unilaterally, 20 times on each leg.
- Hips (Seated Marches): While seated with your hips and knees at a 90 degree angle, gently lift knee straight in the air. Hold this position for 3 seconds and gently lower knee back to starting position. Perform exercise alternately 40 times total.
- Biceps (Curls): While seated, straighten your arms out in front of you, palms up. Gently touch your shoulders, and then return to starting position. Perform this exercise, bilaterally, 20 times.
- Triceps (Chair Pushups): While seated, place both hands on the armrest of the chair you are seated on. Gently lift your behind off chair, straightening the elbows. Hold for 3 seconds and then gently lower yourself back to the chair. Perform this exercise 20 times.
5. Aerobic Conditioning
It is without a doubt that aerobic activity is the one area that helps the body burn fat the most. Breathing, digestion, and blood flow slows after prolonged sitting. By raising the heart rate, all functions to begin to work appropriately. To awaken the body and burn a few calories, walk around the office at least once an hour. In addition, taking the stairs versus the elevator can also increase aerobic conditioning.