Todays information is written by guest blogger Jamie Goffena, Nebraska Extension Educator, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Staying fit can be hard when work keeps many people molded to an office chair most of the day. Studies have shown that a sedentary lifestyle can adversely affect health and may shorten life, according to the National Institute of Health. Periodic movement during the day can reduce that risk. Following are suggestions to work healthier:
- Rather than another jolt of a caffeine drink during breaks, find someone to walk with you daily. This helps keep both people accountable and makes break time more enjoyable.
- Sit on an exercise ball at your desk for part of the day. Try to find one that inflates large enough that your thighs are parallel to the floor with knees at a 90 angle when you sit on it (about 18” above the floor). Keeping your balance on a ball uses more muscles than sitting in a chair. Plus it is hard to sit still. It is fun wiggling a bit while you work at a computer.
- Stand and move more. If your work involves on-line conferences or trainings via webinars do stretches and exercises while watching the on-line training. You could walk in place too.
- Use a standing desk. Have a tall table, desk or surface that is at a counter height so you can stand for part of the day working with your laptop. Better yet…
- Install a walking desk above a treadmill or add a shelf so you can walk while using a laptop. It takes some coordination at first but soon becomes easier.
- Keep free weights beside your telephone so you can do arm lifts while talking via speaker phone or headset. Hold the weights at your shoulders and lift straight up to strengthen arms. With your arms lifted straight above your shoulders bend them at the elbows so that your hands and weights touch the back of your shoulders and repeat. This strengthens the underarm. A third exercise for the arms would be bicep curls: holding weights with your arms by your sides bend your elbows to raise the lower arms up to your shoulders. Do at least 10 repetitions of each lift.
- Stretch while on the job to keep muscles limber, improve circulation and relieve stress. Do shoulder shrugs, along with stretching the neck, arms, hands, back and legs. All major muscles can be stretched easily and quickly. Without straining or bouncing, hold each stretch for 10-15 seconds. Follow along with a video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzdUdDVG_Ps.