The business world makes its demands on all of us in many different ways, and a sedentary lifestyle can be one of them if we aren’t careful. Today’s trends seem to lean more and more in the focus of technology and less towards physical activity and this can have a negative impact on our bodies. Estimates have illustrated clearly that an increasing number of jobs require employees to sit for prolonged amounts of time. I, for one, can say this is most certainly evident in the banking industry as well as the other business offices I have worked in the past. This can wreak havoc on the metabolism and circulation to only name a couple of potential health road blocks.
Ideally, we should all strive to have a workout program in place which gives us the cardiovascular and strengthening that we need to maintain good health at any age. However, whether you are still trying to pin that plan in place or are convinced that you don’t have the time, I am always searching for ways to beat this desk-sitting health hazard, even during the work day.
Almost everyone needs to get more exercise and walking is a very easy way to get the job done. In fact, according to Harvard Health Publications, studies are showing that people who live in suburbs and depend on cars to get around get less exercise than those who live in areas with sidewalks and nearby shops – now add that to an 8 hour or more day desk job and we are in a dangerous place.
Walking is gentle and low impact and it is easy to fit in around the work schedule. If you think more about it, you can get creative depending on your personal situation and surroundings with your job. If you have more than one floor, take the stairs! I am so surprised when I see so many able-bodied people using the elevator every time they go to a different floor. If you get short of breath, then that might be a sign that you need it more than you realized, so just start slowly and work up to a more regular routine.
When weather permits, walk on your lunch hour. Using that time to break up the day and go for a walk is a perfect way to clear your head and circulate your body. It is important to protect and nurture your mental health and studies have indicated that if you walk on a regular basis, you are more apt to lower stress levels.
A great goal to strive to achieve is 10,000 steps each day. This may seem like a lot to some, and if it does then start at 6,000 or 7,000 steps and gradually increase as you feel comfortable. Buy a pedometer and keep track of your progress. Make small changes to your routine to get more steps out of your day. One of the tricks I picked up from a very fit and healthy co-worker is to park in the farthest parking space and walk the extra distance to and from the front door at the office. You would be amazed at what simple things like this will do.
It is important to get up every hour and a half to two hours and stretch or move around for just a couple of minutes. Start protecting yourself now; don’t wait for back pains, poor circulation or heart problems before you take action. We all need to work, but our bodies need to work too!