Working stiff: how to keep moving all day

May 23, 2016 | by Tricia Hutton
Categories: Healthy Driven Life

We all know that keeping an active lifestyle is good for us. Exercise and healthy eating are proven ways to reduce risks for many life-threatening diseases and conditions. However, there is another important piece to being healthy driven and it’s simple: just move.

“Wait!” you say. “I exercise! I go to the gym! I’m active!” That’s great! Keep doing all you are doing.  However, what about after (or before) your workout when you go to work … and sit … all day?

Research finds that, even while maintaining a regular exercise routine, sitting still for long periods of time can be detrimental to your well-being, despite your efforts.

But don’t despair!  There are many ways you can stay active — and make it fun!

These ideas will get you moving:

  • Active workstations. These are treadmill or bicycle desks that allow you to exercise (walking or pedaling) and work at the same time. There are also stability ball chairs, which require you to use your balance and engage your core. These options offer very easy ways to stay in motion and be productive during the day. However, these options can be expensive and your workplace may not allow them. Or, you may be the type of person who accomplishes more if you focus on one thing at a time.
  • Walk as often as possible.  Find a longer way to get to where you need to be, whether it’s to the printer or copier, a meeting or lunch.
  • Take the stairs if you are able. Skip a crowded elevator or escalator. The stairs may even be faster.
  • Stand up while you are working. At least once an hour, give yourself a moment to stand and move your legs and arms. Lean on your desk.  You can even turn it into a few push-ups!
  • Stretch and move while you are sitting. Here are a few ideas: 
    Do shoulder and neck rolls. 
    Move your feet, try twisting them around in circles, clockwise, then counterclockwise (I’ve written the alphabet with my feet while typing before). 
    Stretch out your hands, clench them in to fists, then release and spread your fingers wide apart. 
    Reach your arms out past your keyboard.

And yes, maybe even a little fidgeting can be good for you!

Keep at it.  Once it becomes a habit, motion can be a normal and enjoyable part of your day!

Looking for a new way to keep moving? Check out fitness classes and programs at Edward-Elmhurst Health & Fitness.

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