Less daylight with the long hours in an office can leave anyone feeling out of shape. These exercises will help you banish the bump on a log feeling.
The American lifestyle has led many to spend more time either sitting in an office chair or the recliner at home. Depending on your activities outside work, it is a possible cause of certain harmful health effects. This can be compounded by the winter months and the delicious holiday food we consume during this time of year.
There are a few exercises you can try to stave off the effects of modern culture. These are suggestions for the office, meaning we must first have to touch on ergonomics.
Every office is unique, and we must make the best of our workspace. These days most of us work at a computer. That means we need to start with some ergonomics with your monitor and keyboard.
Your monitor should be directly in front of you, about an arm’s length away, depending on size. If it is larger than 20 inches, sit slightly further away. The top of the screen should be level with your eyes for a 20 inches or smaller monitor. Larger than 20 inches, the top should be about 3 inches above eye level.
Remember, good posture is a fantastic core strengthening measure. Keep your tummy tight and your back straight. This will also help alleviate lower back pain, help with confidence and keep you alert. A clear head will keep the craving for sugary substances at bay and assist in avoiding that morning or afternoon pick-me-up.
Other quick monitor tips:
- Tilt the monitor, so the base is slightly closer to you
- Your monitor's brightness should equal the area directly behind it.
- Avoid glare; it can cause you to squint to make out items on the screen and cause headaches.
- Fonts and colors of items on the screen can be adjusted to help them be more visible.
Your keyboard and mouse should be at a height that allows you to keep an open angle with your arms. For most people, this is just above the level of the lap. It would help if you position your keyboard to allow you to keep your upper arms relaxed and as close to the body as possible. Lastly, keep your mouse close to the keyboard. You should not have to stretch to reach it.
We’re starting with one that your co-workers will not know you are doing: Leg toners.
- Start with your feet flat on the floor while sitting tall in your chair.
- Hold your abdominal muscles tight and slowly extend one leg until it is level with your hip.
- Hold for 10 to 30 seconds.
- Slowly lower your leg.
- Repeat 15 times and then switch legs.
This will keep your legs toned and help prevent blood clots if you sit for extended periods. It will also help shape your legs, so they have more endurance.
We will step it a notch with the next exercise, a chair squat. This is a highly effective body-strengthening exercise. Next time you go to sit down:
- Stand tall, keeping your back straight.
- Lower to within 1 inch of your chair and hold for 10 seconds, or longer if you can.
- Stand back up.
- Repeat 5 to 10 times.
While this one is not as inconspicuous as our leg toners, it is much more effective as it strengthens your core and thighs. These large and dense muscle groups will burn those calories as you consistently perform this exercise.
This last one is more cardio-intensive than our other suggestions but super simple. Pretend you are jumping rope. Either with both feet at once or alternating between feet. This should be done while practicing good posture as well for full effect. Another advantage to this exercise is that you can set your own pace, fast or slow. Keep going until you do not feel that lead in your legs anymore or feel a little muscle burn.
Outside of the exercises, try some other suggestions to keep moving:
- Visit colleagues instead of emailing them.
- Drink lots of water. Keeping well hydrated is good for you, but you'll also be making more trips to the restroom, in which case you could visit one further away.
- Walk faster than normal, don't run, just a pleasant clip. This keeps the heart rate up and stretches those muscles.
- Take the stairs; elevators are slow anyway, right? Try taking them two at a time.
- Make your regular parking spot further away. Put a little more effort into your everyday commute.
During the cool autumn and cold winter months, we all need to be more conscientious of our bodies. With a little extra effort, we can keep active despite the cold. This can allow us in the office to end the season better than we started it.
Supportive Shoes for the Office From KURU
Even though you’re making a conscious effort to be more active throughout the day inside the office, it’s also important to remember the dress code there. You may not be able to sport your favorite athletic shoes in this setting. At KURU, we understand the need for various styles and functions in your shoes. That’s why we offer office-appropriate shoes with the same incredible support and KURUSOLE technology as our athletic shoes. You may be working out in the office, but you don’t have to feel like it.
Enjoy the comfort and protection of KURU shoes, no matter where you’re at, and experience a higher quality of life at work, at home, and at the gym.