When the doorbell rings the next time, take the initiative to open the door instead of asking your house help to do that for you.
When watching TV, keep the remote away from the couch, so that whenever you want to change the channel you have to get up from your place.
These are simple things that can help you to get up and walk when at home. But as most of us spend maximum time at the office sitting in a chair, it becomes a bit difficult to follow these simple tricks at the workplace. But worry not? We share a few quick tips on how to get more active throughout your day at your office because being physically active is better than none at all.
6 proven ways to amp up your step count
As we spend most of our time at the office, it makes sense to get the most of it at your workplace by leading an active lifestyle. To help you get started, we have put together this list of 6 simple yet effective ideas that will counter the effects of sitting all day. The more you move, the better you’ll feel — it can’t get easier than that.
1. Replace that bottle with a glass
Staying hydrated is important for weight loss and living healthy. But still thinking why glass for that? Because you have a reason to get up frequently to refill water. Those extra 100-150 steps each hour will add up to a big figure by the end of the day. And to make this all the more worthwhile, skip the water cooler right by your desk and head to the one that’s at the other end of the office.
Set an alarm on your pedometer, phone or system to gently nudge you into activity when you’ve been sedentary for an hour or more. This will make sure you don’t forget to get out of your chair, boost your step count and ensure you are getting your dose of hydration.
2. Use the washroom on the other floor
If you’re hydrating well, you are likely to make frequent visits to the washroom. When you do need to get up, head to a bathroom that’s furthest away or one on a different floor. And while doing that, skip the elevator and take the stairs to get there instead. A quick trip up and down the stairs is a good way to sneak in some extra steps.
3. Walk while you make phone calls
Between conference calls and speaking with clients, it’s not uncommon to spend a large amount of your work time over the phone. However, if you don’t need access to a computer while you chat, make it a point to stand up whenever you’re talking on the phone. You can walk around the office, pace close to your desk or pop into a conference room and walk around the long table when attending calls to up your step count.
4. Send fewer emails to converse in person
Some conversations could easily be had in person instead of loading up the mailbox or discussing it over the phone. Try and get up from your chair for a quick chat with your colleague or and walk to your colleague’s desk whenever possible to discuss an issue. Besides upping your step count, it has been shown to improve health, reduce workplace stress and further establish and cultivate your relationships with the people you work with. Take those opportunities to stretch your legs and relax your arms.
5. Go to the cafeteria for casual meetings
Instead of sitting and having lunch at your desk, try taking a walk to grab a coffee or schedule that informal meeting or discussion with coworkers outdoors over a quick walk. Spending time in nature amidst fresh air and walking while you talk can lighten your mood, make you feel better and add those steps to your count. The extra exercise also aids in digestion and is a great way to re-energize and clear your mind.
Aim to take at least 500 steps before heading back to your work desk. This will help work out any stiffness in your body and make you more productive before you prepare for more sitting around for the rest of the day.
6. Don’t have time for gym? Try this!
Simply stand up straight behind your chair with your feet flat on the floor and hold on for support. Next, raise your heels off the floor slightly until you are standing completely on your toes. Slowly bring yourself back to the floor. Performing three sets of 10 will help to strengthen your calf and thigh muscles. This is a super subtle move you can do anytime, without letting others know that you’re getting a workout! Don’t be surprised if your co-workers want to join in too!
No matter how many hours you spend in the office per week, there are always ways to get that heart rate up, increase your step count, and slowly watch those extra pounds shed away. Now that you know how to bring the wellness habits you practice at home to your office digs. The next time you feel like your rear might actually be stuck to your desk chair, try a few of these tricks to get moving. Pair these with a few of the flexibility exercises to stretch your muscles. From controlling weight and combating health conditions, to boosting energy and improving mood, the benefits are endless.
Get creative, get motivated, and get moving! So, are you up for the challenge and ready to take an active role in your health?
(The article is reviewed by Dr. Swati Mishra, Medical Editor)