Whether you’re still trying to shake off some of that holiday weight, your schedule doesn’t seem to have room for the gym or you’re looking for a new way to hit the afternoon slump – deskercise is the way to go! As a Productivity Ninja, you don’t just take care of the work on your desk, but you also look after yourself. Here are our favorite ways to keep a healthy lifestyle, even if you feel like you’re chained to your office chair.
Ever felt sluggish at work, but immediately felt re-energized after drinking a big glass of water? It’s not a coincidence. Rather than dragging yourself to the kitchen for the 50th coffee of the day, which will make you feel much worse after the initial caffeine boost has worn off – opt in for some cold water. As a rule of thumb, it’s suggested to drink 6-8 eight-ounce glasses of water a day, with some adults requiring even more.
We’ll stay here while you’re refilling your water bottle….
As well as building the below exercises into your daily routine, also try and walk as much as you can within the day. Does it look like a nice day outside? Why not walk to or from work today? Have a 121 catch up coming up with a team member? Boost your meeting skills – grab them and do a walking meeting instead of sitting down in a stuffy meeting room. Try and opt for taking the stairs as much as you can and include as much standing up in your daily routine, as you can. If you don’t have a standing desk, introduce stand up meetings or do all your phone calls stood up. These small changes throughout the day won’t go unnoticed by your overall health, wellbeing and productivity.
If you want to go the extra mile and maybe also get some of your other team members involved – here are some easy to follow exercises.
1) Seated Leg Lifts
Whilst seated at your desk, lift one or both legs and hold it there for five seconds, then lower your leg(s) back down to the floor without letting them touch the ground. Then repeat for 15 reps. A way to do a secret workout without many people knowing and not having to leave your desk – plus you can add weight to your legs (rucksack/handbag/briefcase) to increase the pressure and workout.
2) Standing Calf Raises
Standing up by your desk, steadily alternate between standing on your toes and rocking back onto your heels. This is great for improving circulation and also your balance. If it feels a bit challenging in the beginning, feel free to hold on to your desk while switching between toes and heels, until you feel more confident.
3) Shoulder Raises
Raise your shoulders up toward your ear, hold for 10 seconds, and relax. For an even bigger stretch , do just one shoulder at a time, then alternate five times each. These are great for relieving tension in your neck.
4) Back Twists
To start, sit in your chair and place your right arm behind your right hip. Twist to the right side and hold or 10 seconds, then repeat on the other side. Aim to do three on each side.
This is a great way to relieve tension in your back.
5) Wall Sit
Wall sits are a great way to build strength and endurance. Stand with your back against the wall, bend your knees and slide your back down the wall until the thighs are parallel to the floor. Sit and hold for 30-60 seconds.
As you get stronger and more advanced, try and cross the right ankle over the left knee. Hold for 15 seconds, then switch.
This exercise is perfect to get the rest of the team involved. You can even flex your competitive muscles and see who can do the longest wall sit in the office.
For more office fitness inspiration, check out the following resources:
By Hannah Urbanek
Hannah is Think Productive UK’s Head of Marketing and the voice behind much of our global social media and editorial content. You can connect with Think Productive North America directly here or with Barbara Green, our President, on LinkedIn.
This post was originally published in May 2015 and has been updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.