Keeping fit is always an equation in our minds especially when we have access to food anytime, anywhere and for anyone. When we are cooped up in the office for 3/4 of the day, we begin to feel that we should factor in a part of it for exercise, however, being swamped with meetings, emails and work, we might not have the time to schedule a lunch workout or a post office hour exercise regime. Here’s 3 ways that can help you maintain your fitness during office hours.
The Stair Master
Want to avoid elevator small talk in favour of elevating the heart rate? Use the stairs. Stair climbing also exercises our bones and muscles, improving strength, bone density and muscle tone. This is especially important for women in sedentary office jobs as they have a significantly higher osteoporosis risk than men.
Stair climbing is recommended by doctors and health authorities worldwide because high quality studies show:
- Climbing just eight flights of stairs a day lowers average early mortality risk by 33%
- Seven minutes stair climbing a day can halve the risk of heart attack over 10 years
- Just two minutes extra stair climbing a day is enough to stop average middle age weight gain
Believe it or not? Why not give it a try!
2. The Ball Stabalizer
Substitute your chair with an exercise ball, train your core and work on the obliques. Sitting on a chair requires no muscle activity at all and it actually hurts us for a number of reasons, says John P. Porcari, PhD, FACSM, exercise physiologist at the University of Wisconsin, LaCrosse. “For one, people tend to slouch and use poor posture, and sitting in a chair puts your abs on ‘slack’ and decreases core strength. Using an exercise ball counteracts both of these things.” Although you can still use poor posture on a ball, sitting properly requires subtle muscle contractions of the core, hip and leg muscles to maintain balance, which contribute to muscle tone.
3. The Shoulder Shrug
Get your joints and muscles moving. I have tried this many times after being in front of the computer for a few hours and I realised the back of my shoulders (trapezius muscles) were so stiff and this helps to stretch and to release tension with the shoulder shrug exercise. Posture is very important for this exercise.
A – Drop your arms down, shoulders relaxed
B – Look straight ahead and start shrugging your shoulders backwards for 10x
C – Continue with shrugging it forward 10x
D – You will feel your neck being involved as well, do a slight stretch and hold your neck to the left and right
E – Take a deep breathe and breath it all out.
F – How do you feel? More relaxed?
Do let me know what you think about these exercises and what are some other exercises that have helped you release some fatigue during work and also to keep fit during office hours.