We spend most of our time at the workplace. Although we know it is healthier to work out, we just don’t have the time. In the morning we have to commute, in the evening we are tired. This leaves only the weekend, but there is also family and friend we want to spend time with. The solution are 5 office workouts you can do at work every day. They don’t require any special tools or equipment, and you don’t even have to change clothes.
Of course those office workouts do not replace frequent training, and they are not long enough to burn significant amounts of calories. But they are good for your heart and your blood circulation, and also support your mental health. So, lets jumps right into it.
Leg lift in your chair or on the floor
The muscles in your legs are the biggest, and they require a lot of blood. So moving legs is always good to push your heart and lungs a bit.
That’s how you do it:
- Turn the chair away from the desk, so you have maximum legroom.
- Make sure the chair is not in reclining position.
- Stretch your legs and hold them for 10 seconds. Take deep breathes in, and exhale slowly.
- Lower your legs, shake them a bit and go back in stretch position, now holding them straight for 30 seconds.
- Repeat the exercise as many times as you like.
Stairway to health
This is a simple exercise we always forget because we are so used to take the elevator. All you have to do is taking the stairs every day for at least three floors. If you can do five floors, even better. And yes, you have to go upstairs (I read your thoughts). You can additionally take the stairs when going down, but that’s an extra.
Walking upstairs will force your heart to pump more blood in the muscles and your lungs to provide more oxygen. If you have a heart condition, please take it slowly and consult your doctor. If you have a fitness band or tracker, you will see the improvement and you reach your daily goal faster.
The “Touch the Sky” office workout
This is an easy exercise for both office workers and those you stand a lot during work, like in retail or other services. Stand straight, both legs close together, feet pointing forwards. Now stretch both arms upwards, and try to stretch them as much as you can. Try to touch the ceiling, or the sky, hence the name. Hold the stretch for 10-30 seconds, then lower the arms, let them rest for 10 seconds. Then repeat the exercise.
The stretching is good for both your arms and you back. Most complaints about back pain and headaches come from muscles in your back that are contracted. When stretching them, you can relax the tension.
Push-ups on the office floor
It may look a bit of awards first, but push-ups are a basic exercise in every fitness studio for a reason. They also force your blood circulation in higher gear, and you use a different set of muscles. You will always find a place to go down and do a few rounds of push-ups, maybe behind your desk or in a meeting room. Ask you co-workers if they want to join, and even your supervisor. Five to ten minutes per day is already enough, if you combine it with other exercises.
Reach for the floor
This is an exercise for your neck and shoulders, but will also burn some calories. You need something heavy, about 4-6 pounds, best with a handle or in a bag. Stand up and straight, shoulders retracted, breast elevated. Then hold the weigh in your right hand. You want to feel how it pulls your arm down a bit. The take your left arm, reach over your head to your right ear and carefully move your head to the left. Stretch as far as you feel comfortable and then hold the position for 10-30 seconds. Move the head carefully back. Repeat with the weight in the left arm and the right arm pulling your head.
Why those 5 office workouts work
When we talk about workouts, we actually mean get your heart rate up, increase blood circulation and lung function. You can do this by running, cycling, boxing or any other sports. But in the office, time and space is limited. So the trick is, to use your muscles as much as you can, in particular leg muscles. While doing the office workouts, the muscles cells will need lots of oxygen, which the lung has to produce by breathing and the heart has to deliver. It’s not rocket science, but doing those 5 office workouts every day can help you with a more healthy lifestyle. Also, you can modify them according to your needs