An increasing number of jobs require us to sit in front of a desk all day. This type of routine is highly detrimental to our physical health, as we were originally meant to run and explore. Of course, the solution isn’t to go back to the wild lifestyle, but to make some changes and adopt a healthier work routine.
According to fitness coach Jason Owings, the first step is to set your goals. Making your body healthy and well again requires a different focus when it comes to exercise, nutrition and motivation than trying to build an athletic one, so it’s something that’s achievable for everyone While defining your goals, remember to take into account other factors (social, professional, personal) that might affect your plan. For example, if your job requires frequent travel, that might affect your workout and nutrition routines. That does not mean you cannot achieve your goal, however, it just requires more planning and motivation to stay on track.
Exercising in the morning
Finding excuses not to exercise is easy, especially during the day when you have so many great distractions (going out with friends, too much work etc.). To avoid letting life’s surprises hindering my fitness goals, I decided to wake up early and go to the gym while everyone was still asleep. I had no excuse apart from myself. Although the first few weeks were hard, I noticed a significant increase in my energy and motivation. Not only will exercising in the morning change the perception of your body, but it will also create a positive mindset to start your day.
Eating nutritional meals
Meal prepping is also an important part of maintaining a healthy body. Eating take-out is, of course, the easiest option, yet it is not always the healthiest. Ordering a salad with a high-fat and high-sugar dressing won’t help you attain your goals. By meal-prepping, you will know exactly how nutrient-dense your meals are so you can maintain your healthy routine.
Take several breaks throughout the day
As you know by now, keeping healthy is really about balance. Spending your entire day at a desk, sitting in front of your computer might be stressful for your body. How about you take 2-3 breaks throughout the day to move a bit? Instead of going from sitting in front of your desk to sitting around a coffee with your colleagues, take your coffee and go for a walk with them. If you are working from home, take 10 minutes to stretch, walk out your dog(s) or prepare your meals. I recently came across this article from Kristy Arnett, who successfully managed her online career while staying fit. Her secret? Snacking on green smoothies and taking breaks to stretch.
It’s all about positioning
The way you sit in front of your desk might also impact your physical health in the long-term. The typical, rounded-back posture many of us adopt when sitting can cause aches and pain, and crossing your legs impacts on blood circulation. If you want to avoid physical pains, how about switching from standing to sitting at your desk throughout the day? Changing positions will engage different muscles and you’ll get more movement throughout your whole body on a regular basis.
For those who have difficulty working when standing, using a stability ball also helps to adopt a steady posture and strengthen your abs. Plus, you can count it as part of your daily workout routine, too!
Health is the most important element we all need to function and live happily. When you find your own balanced routine you’ll discover that the benefits even include enhanced work performance and productivity!