According to the World Health Organization, sitting for excessively long periods increases all causes of mortality. It’s now a wonder that it’s among the ten leading causes of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), disability, and death worldwide.
Even when regularly working out, you might still not be doing enough movements to prevent the harmful dangers of a sedentary lifestyle. A recent research shows that there’s a need to meet the 150 minutes per week recommended exercise guidelines to counteract the health risks caused by increased physical inactivity.
If you’re currently glued to their office chairs, start moving now! You don’t need to go to the gym or have workout equipment to eliminate your unhealthy deskwork. You could break a sweat right there on your desk.
Here are some exercises you can do to stay active and fit while at work.
Cardio: Jog In Place
This is the most common and simplest cardio to do. Make a quick break for a few stationary jogs. Pop up from your swivel chair, do a 40-60 second jog right in your office, and repeat it 3-5 times daily. If you’re willing to puff and huff more, increase the intensity by picking up your knees to waist level.
Jogging for a minute or two won’t get rid of your belly fat fast. However, you’ll gradually lose weight if you regularly run in place for a longer time. If you badly want to lose weight, jogging in place for 12 minutes can burn 100 calories or more.
If you want to have more endurance, taking pre-workout supplements may help. However, they can be quite expensive for some people. The good news is that there are discount cards from The Bee Healthy Blog and other legit sources that you can take advantage of.
Further, when you work out, you’re pumping energy and adrenaline, so you’re basically waking yourself up in the most natural way. Hence, you may not need caffeine in between your work anymore! Instead, jog in place during coffee breaks. It’s hitting two birds with one stone: staying awake at work while losing calories.
Glutes: Chair Squat
Are you already an expert at standing? Add squats to level up! Remember these steps: sit in the air, stand up, and repeat. Bend your knees slightly so your thighs would be parallel to the ground. Hold this position for 15 seconds before releasing and standing up. Make sure that you stand with your feet together. Repeat for four to six reps.
Squatting will fix the possible damage in your lumbar spine and hips caused by sitting too much. In addition, it would open up your hips, which helps take good care of your knees and can prevent lower back pain.
Chest, Shoulders, Core & Triceps: Tricep Dips
Multitasking also takes place in exercises. For example, you can work out your chest, shoulders, and triceps using your body weight, a sturdy office table, or a non-rolling chair.
First, take a step forward from the desk or chair and place your hands shoulder-width apart on it. Next, bend your elbows to a 90-degree angle so your body will dip down. Hold this position for a few seconds, re-straighten, and repeat for 8-10 reps.
Tricep dips are one of the Closed Kinetic Chain (CKC) exercises mainly focused on muscle tone and definition. In doing dips, your arms support the movement, while your core will inevitably flex for stability. As a result, it can increase strength in the general upper body area, chest, triceps, and abdomen.
What’s more, it’s better than push-ups. Don’t get me wrong. Both tricep dips and push-ups are excellent bodyweight exercises. It’s just that you only lift your entire bodyweight with tricep dips, while just a fraction with push-ups. It doesn’t burn calories as much as jogging in place, but it would definitely increase your body strength compared to other cardio.
Neck: Nape Shaper
Who says you can’t work out while acting exasperated by the workday? Try this neck strengthening trick! Place your head in both hands while pressing your palms against your forehead. It’s like pushing your head backward with your hands and resisting the motion with your neck muscles.
Next, do the other way around. First, clasp both hands at the back of your neck. Then, push your head backward while resisting the motion of your hand. Don’t forget to hold each position for 5 seconds, take a rest, and repeat the routine five times or more. This workout can prevent neck pains and strains, which we usually have as side effects of slogging too much at our desks.
Back: Seated Lower Back Rotational Stretch
For sure, you’ve been encountering pain and stiffness in your elbow, shoulder, back, and neck, all caused by the deskbound static posture. Back pains are specifically caused by the pressure on the spinal discs and back muscles caused by sitting too long. To avoid this, perform a lower back stretch on your chair.
While sitting tall and backing off from the back of the chair, engage your abs inward and upward, and extend to the top of your head as you start to bend to another side. Start by turning from the lower back, followed by the middle and upper backs. In general, this would strengthen your core muscles and lower back.
Increasing your physical activity is the key to getting healthier at your unhealthy deskwork, and being active means breaking a sweat, not just your fingers moving on your keyboard. Additionally, combining a variety of cardiovascular exercises with strength-training exercises is best to meet the minimum physical activity and for best results.