For many professionals around the world, a typical day at work means sitting at a desk for an extended period of time. It can be difficult to stay in shape with such a sedentary lifestyle, especially when much of that time is spent hunched over a computer. Fortunately, several guides have been created to help you stay fit at your desk job.
Take a Break Every Hour
Sitting for extended periods of time can affect posture and blood flow. A small step to stay healthy is to take a short break about once every hour. Use this time to walk around, stretch, or get a drink of water. Prolonged screen time can cause eye strain and vision damage, so intermittent breaks are vital for eye health as well. Besides being good for physical health, regular breaks can help clear your mind and relieve stress, alleviating any mental strain you might be feeling on the job.
Walk or Cycle to Work
Instead of driving a car, taking the subway, or grabbing an Uber, which can be harmful for the environment and your health, try walking or biking to work. This may not be a viable option for everyone, especially those impacted by disability or distance, but keep in mind that walking is a great form of cardiovascular health. If it’s not possible to get to work on foot, try taking walks at lunchtime or during breaks.
Be Mindful About Diet
Vending machine foods, processed foods, and other junk foods should generally be avoided, but it is crucial for those working desk jobs to stay away from high-calorie, low-nutrient foods. Junk food does not efficiently fuel the body, and sugary foods and drinks can lead to mid-afternoon crashes. Grab healthy snacks at work, and if those aren’t offered, bring your own. Opt for fruits, vegetables, and protein-rich foods like nuts. When lunchtime arrives, avoid fast food or greasy restaurant meals. Try packing your own lunch—a sandwich, salad, or leftovers you can easily reheat—and take time to keep track of what you’re eating. Whole foods naturally increase energy and productivity, clear brain fog, and contribute to a leaner, healthier figure. In essence, these foods will help you get the job done.
Eat a Healthy Breakfast
Health and fitness aren’t limited to work hours. Before you head out to the office, make sure you dine on a healthy, well-balanced breakfast. As the most important meal of the day, breakfast sets the tone and stage. Skipping the meal might lead to poor eating habits later on in the day while eating sugary or otherwise unhealthy foods can give you a strong but short-lived energy boost. Make sure you get plenty of protein and vitamins by eating eggs or drinking a protein shake, and be sure to avoid pastries and other sugar-filled breakfast foods.