The modern working world can leave you feeling burnt out before the Monday blues have even had chance to subside. Early mornings and sleepless nights zap your energy reserves, while ever-extending working hours make it near enough impossible to get your recommended 30 minutes of exercise each day.
Personal and professional wellbeing doesn’t have to come at the expense of a costly gym membership and hours spent working up an appetite on the treadmill. By making a few simple adjustments to your daily routine, there will still be time to put your feet up in the evening and show no mercy to a packet of chocolate digestives. We’ve pulled together our top tips on staying active in the office because with improved physical health comes improvement in mental capacity, ability to handle stress and overall performance.
We’re not suggesting you whip out the yoga mat and contort yourself into the downward dog in front of your boss – there’s enough time for red-face antics at the Christmas party – but these subtle efforts will go a long way to impressing while keeping your own wellbeing in check.
A successful working day begins in the kitchen…
You don’t need us to tell you that a balanced diet and plenty of water are the key ingredients to great physical and mental health but we’re going to anyway. Swap your usual morning coffee fix for a long glass of H2O and carry on sipping at least eight glasses throughout the day. It only takes a 2% drop in body water to negatively impact your performance so keeping on top of hydration will ensure you remain alert right up until it’s time to clock off. Preparing a healthy packed lunch the night before will also encourage you to stay away from that pesky vending machine, tightening purse strings as well as waistlines.
On your bike!
When you’ve tossed and turned all night mulling over tomorrow’s to-do list, it can be tempting to steal an extra ten minutes in bed – we get it. However, your weekend lie in isn’t too far away so make the effort to spend that spare time walking or cycling to work instead. The early morning exercise will get your blood pumping and stand you in good stead for the rest of the day. If you’re more than walking distance from the office, simply hop off the bus a stop earlier or park a little further away than you usually would to cash in on those vital extra steps.
We really aren’t pulling your leg with this one…
Office chairs aren’t just there for celebratory wheelies as Friday evening approaches and that bottle of wine comes closer into sight. They provide posture support to avoid back and neck damage but are also great for chair yoga. Yes, you read that right – yoga in a chair and there are even a handful of fantastic free apps that you can download to your smartphone that will guide you through all the right moves. In fact, we’re doing the ‘Wooden Leg’ as we type and nobody is any the wiser. Extend your leg out straight, raise, hold for 20 seconds and repeat 15 times on each side and you’re on the way to sculpted limbs without stepping foot in the gym.
Shall we take this outside?
With modern technology at the helm, face-to-face communication may seem like an age-old concept but it’s time to bring back good old fashioned conversation. If you’ve got something to discuss with a colleague, get out of that spinney chair, walk to their desk and speak about it in person. Not only will this allow you to stretch your legs, it also makes for better relationship building and team morale. Similarly, if you’ve got a lengthy meeting planned, shake up regular proceedings by suggesting you stand up or even go for a stroll around the office grounds. This will enable you to incorporate physical activity into your busy schedule and encourage more dynamic interaction between you and your colleagues.