Three tips for adding a walking workout to your daily job routine
Many of us working Americans are stuck behind a desk day-in, day-out, with little opportunity to get up and stretch our legs. The sluggish inactivity of this sedentary lifestyle is a huge contributor to the spread of obesity in our country, but the solution may be simple enough: we just need to get off our behinds and walk around.
Research has shown that regular walking can help in controlling blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol, burn calories and strengthen bones. If you’re a patient of a bariatric procedure like LAP-BAND in Dallas, getting regular exercise is crucial for weight loss, but you’ll have to return to work eventually, which may mean sitting down for long stretches of the day.
Walking is one form of exercise that anyone can do, and experts say that just 30 minutes of walking each day, or 150 minutes a week, will be a great advantage to your health and reduce your risk of developing various lifestyle-related diseases. Some cutting edge workplaces are now encouraging their employees to get on their feet more throughout the day in the form of “walking meetings” or pedometer competitions, but these tips will help you get more steps into your workday regardless of company policy.
- Take breaks. If you’re swamped with a big project, it can be tempting to eat lunch at your desk while you continue working. Though this may help you avoid falling behind, it won’t do your body any good. Instead, try getting out of the office on your lunch break and going for a stroll. This will not only help you escape the stresses and pressures of the office, but give you a great chance for some mild exercise in the middle of the day. You can bring your lunch with you for a picnic on the go, or grab a healthy takeout lunch at a local eatery. It may also be beneficial to take a few quick breaks throughout the day to just stand and take some steps around your office.
- Try a pedometer. Some companies promote healthy competition in the form of pedometer programs. Whether or not this is the case for your workplace, getting a pedometer can be a great way to keep track of your daily physical activity every step of the way. Try suggesting a pedometer competition between coworkers or just setting daily step goals for yourself. Either way, using a pedometer will show you just how much you’re walking each day and at the very least may provide you with a wakeup call to your own levels of inactivity.
- Turn off the TV. For the average American, watching television contributes a number of sedentary hours each day, and a recent, eye-opening Australian study even determined that each hour of television watched by a person can shorten their lifespan by about 22 minutes. After a stressful day at work, plopping down on the couch to tune in to your favorite TV show may be a highly inviting prospect, but will only add to the sedentary hours you already put in at the office. Instead, try working out as soon as you get home, which is sure to be a greater stress reliever than even the most intense reality TV show.
Studies have shown that even just standing will burn significantly more calories than just sitting will, so after a full day of sitting behind a computer, try to stay on your feet as much as possible