Thursday, May 17, 2012

Turn Your Job into a Gym

Too busy to exercise?  Turn your Job into a Gym!  Here are some easy ideas:

1. Sit on a ball.

  •  People with back problems swear by them, and the micro movements really add up.  A friend who is a masterful third grade teacher has a lot of kids in her class with problems focusing.  She put the whole class on balls (with the rule “butts on the ball, feet on the floor”) and she now has a quiet, focused, happy classroom.  Try it in your office!

2. Stand up!  Look everywhere for possibilities to stand rather than sit.

  • On the phone?  Stand up.  Not only healthier and burns more calories, you’ll sound more enthusiastic to person on the other end of the line.  Why not?
  • Meetings?  If they are less than 15 minutes – have everyone stay standing.  You’ll be more creative, and you’ll save time.  
  • Longer meetings?  If they are one-on-one put on your walking shoes and meet while getting in a walk. A great way to build personal chemistry, too.
  • Put a desk side table up on blocks so you can stand up and work on your computer.  You don’t have to spend a lot of money (although those adjustable hydraulic desks look amazing) just find something to elevate a second work surface.
  • OK, if you really like this office gym idea, you have to get a slow moving treadmill with the desk installed.  

3. Walk around.

  • You don’t have to be a top executive to manage by walking around.  Reduce your emails and just walk over and ask that question.  Find reasons to jump out of your chair.
  • Use the stairs.  Start with one flight up and two down.  You’ll be amazed how quickly you’ll adapt.
  • Use the parking lot or ramp as your personal treadmill.  Park far away from the door, or take a lap or two before you head home for the day.  
  • Keep walking shoes in your desk and in your car.  Walk to your favorite lunch spot instead of driving.  Walk there and ride back with colleagues.  Have them order for you and you’ll be right on time!
  • Stop halfway home to walk your favorite park, shopping mall, or high school track.  Squeeze in that time for yourself before you pick up the kids or get involved in the hub-bub of family life.

4. Bend, Stretch, and Muscle It!

  • Stretch at your desk, especially those upper back muscles.  
  • Get up and do a big stretch every hour at least.  This is the most important thing you can do to prevent clots.  Stretch those calves and hamstrings with yoga forward folds.  You’ll feel more awake with all that blood going to your head.  Be slow rising. We don’t want you getting dizzy. 
  • Why not do a few knee push ups while you are at it?  If you don’t have a place where you can shut the door, can you find a spot just behind your desk?  And while you are down there, how about a few crunches?  Create a set and do it 3 times.  It should take only about 5 minutes and you’ll feel great.
  • How about wall squats?  30 seconds whenever you use the washroom?
  • If you have carpal tunnel tendencies, remember to stretch your hands!

A little bit here, a little bit there, pretty soon you’ll notice the difference.
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