It can be difficult to get enough exercise when you have a desk job. But there are a lot of easy ways you can add a few minutes of activity to your day for a great health benefit without spending any money or setting aside a lot of extra time.
1. Park Farther Away
Those executive reserved parking spaces right by the door might look appealing, but think of all the steps you wouldn't be getting if one of those spots were reserved for you. Parking your car at the far end of the parking lot and walking to your office building can give you an extra minute or two of aerobic activity – a great way to start your day.
2. Take the Stairs
This is one of the oldest tricks in the book to get more exercise at work. Not only can taking the stairs help elevate your heart rate, but it's a good strength exercise for your legs at the same time. If you're going up several floors, try taking the elevator only part of the way. Get off a couple floors early, and then take the stairs the rest of the way.
3. Use the Restroom on Another Floor
As long as you're taking the stairs, head to another floor to use the restroom facilities. This can be especially helpful if your duties don't require you to move between floors very often – it's a good excuse to take the stairs a couple of times a day.
4. Get up and Walk
Stay more alert by getting up and walking around every 30 – 45 minutes. Getting up and walking away from your computer can actually increase focus and productivity when you come back. It's a good way to get your blood flowing and get a couple extra minutes of aerobic activity during the day.
5. Walk and Talk
If your job has you on the phone often, you might try walking around during your phone calls. You can either put the phone on speaker and walk back and forth in your office, or take the call on your cell and walk around the building. Either can be a good way to boost your heart rate, and depending on the length of the call, you could get a lot of extra activity you'd otherwise have missed out on.
6. Take a Lunch Walk
You spend the entire day inside. If it's nice out and you have the extra time, take part of your lunch and go for a short walk. Even if it's just a 10-minute circle around the block, it's a great way to enjoy the outdoors. And if you ask some coworkers to join you, it's a good way to build office relationships.
7. Brainstorm on the Move
If you're brainstorming for a project, go for a stroll around your office building while you do it. The change of scenery can help boost creativity and you get several minutes of light physical activity in the process.
8. Talk in Person
Talking face-to-face can be the easiest way to convey your ideas to someone – you can't change your inflection in an email or use body language over the phone. But getting up to talk to your coworkers instead of emailing or talking on the phone is a great reason to stand up, walk around, and add some more exercise to your routine, too.