If you’re at your desk right now, reading this, then stop. Okay, no, not “stop reading “, more like “stop sitting “. Yes, we encourage you to stand up.
We’ll be giving you a few exercises you can do even while at your desk.
Why? Well, more and more people spend the most part of their day seated at a desk, buried in emails. Some while way mindlessly scrolling through twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Thanks to modernism, we’ve been so engineered to spend most of our lives sitting, but what you probably don’t know is that this is killing us
WHO (World Health Organisation) says that over three million deaths can be attributed to a lack of physical activity. Scary, right? Our sedentary lifestyles are part of the reasons we’re suffering from diabetes, heart conditions as well as loss of bone and muscle strength. It’s even more alarming that people who exercise regularly are probably still not getting enough movement in their lives to counteract this sedentary life.
All That Sitting Is Making You Fat
On average, we spend close to ten hours a day sitting. Compare that to the other seven hours we spend sleeping (on average), we really are doing a lot of sitting.
The typical work day is basically going to work in a vehicle, sitting in comfy seats , except you’re going in a train or bus, then it’s not so comfy, but still sitting. You get to your workplace and sit at your desk, stare at your screen, while going through lots and lots of emails
You go for meetings, have conference calls and maybe even a little session where you gossip with a coworker. All of these, you possibly do, still sitting. That’s a lot of sitting! Let’s not even talk about the part where you probably had lunch delivered to you at your desk so that you could work a little more. After work, you go in a vehicle (still sitting) and the first thing you do when you get home is hit the couch!
At the end of the day, you would have sat for the most part. That’s the reason that hour on the elliptical isn’t going to help. The impact of all the sitting is an increased rate of obesity.
Don’t panic, the world isn’t ending. There are a few activities you could carry out to help reverse the inevitable weight gain, maybe even lose up to twenty pounds, associated with such a sedentary lifestyle.
So let’s look at a few physical activities you could engage in while at your desk.
1. Rubber Neck
Simply sit up tall and drop your right ear down towards your right shoulder (no, you don’t have to touch your shoulders). Hold the bent position for a few seconds and do the same for the left side.
2. Reach for the Stars
Interlace your fingers and stretch them up as high as you can. Make sure to keep your palms facing up towards the ceiling.
3. Look Around
Turn your head to the right and then try to look over your shoulder, hold the position for a few seconds and do the same on the right.
Drop your chin towards your chest and very gently, roll your hide from left to right and back to left. Repeat for as long as you can.
Raise both of your shoulders and pretend like you’re getting them to reach your ears. Hold the position for a few seconds and then release. Repeat this a few times for a good measure.
6. Chest Opener
Bring your hands behind your back, press your palms together then sit tall and hold that way for about ten seconds.
7. Seated Toy Soldier
Sit tall and extend your right arm up towards the sky. Straighten your left leg out and raise it up as you bring down your right arm and try to touch your left foot repeat this ten times on each side.
8. Knee Hugger
Bend your knee and lift your right leg up. Then grab it with your arms and pull it in as close to your chest as you can. Hold for ten seconds and then makes sure you do the same on your left side too.
9. Walk/Jog/Run in Place
Simply run, jog or walk in one spot for thirty minutes. Repeat this about five times. Anyone can do this, you can decide how fast you want your pace to be. If you want an even bigger challenge, try bringing your knees up to your waist level.
No, don’t panic, you’re not going to get on the floor in your office. Pheew, right? There are other options besides the floor that you can do pushups on. You can do them on the wall (assuming they’re not glass) or you could even use the edge of your desk. If you’re going to do them against the wall, be sure not to do them on a cubicle wall, you may just end up on the floor or if you’re lucky enough, on your co-worker’s desk. Repeat it ten times for three rounds.
Simply stand from your chair, sit back down. Stand again, sit back down. Repeat ten times. It should be fun!
12 Pretend Jump Rope
Hop on both feet at once or maybe you can alternate. Increase the intensity by adding arm movements you would do if you had a jump rope.
13 Calf Raises
Stand behind you chair while holding it for support. Raise your heels off the floor so that you’re completely standing on your toes. Lower yourself slowly back to the floor till your heels touch the floor. Do three sets of ten.
14. Glute Squeeze
Simply squeeze your glutes as hard as you can and hold it on for thirty seconds before releasing.
15. Shoulder Press
Look around your office and search for an old phone book or ream of paper. You need anything that weighs a few pounds. Hold it at shoulder height and then raise it all the way overhead. Repeat ten times for each round. Do three rounds.
16. Wall Sit
This is a great isometric move. Stand with your back firmly against the wall. Then slowly, lower yourself onto a seated position. Hold the position for thirty seconds and repeat as many times as you can.