Millions of Americans waste away every day at work sitting behind a desk and staring at a computer screen. While an office job is often a great way to make a living, sitting for 8 hours a day (sometimes more!) isn't too great on your body.
Sitting around all day could easily lead to weigh gain if you aren't careful. But you can still find ways to be active around the office even if you have a very sedentary job. Use these exercises to add a little activity to your desk-bound office life.
1. Standing desk
More and more you are beginning to see people in offices using standing desks. Not only is the standing desk ergonomically friendly, you can burn several hundred calories more using it then by just sitting at a desk. Not only does it help burn calories, it is also very beneficial for your posture. You get a lot more blood flowing when you are standing than you do plopped down in an office chair all day.
2. Take the stairs
One great way to burn of some extra calories while at work is to eschew the elevator in favor of the stairs. If you work on a semi-reasonable floor, taking the stairs even a few times a week can help burn enough calories to battle typical weight gain. If you make it part of your routine, it won't take too long before you forget all about the elevator.
3. Stretch it out
Sitting too long while staring at a computer screen can start to make your muscles tense up. Take some time out of the day to get up, walk around, and stretch those muscles. Roll your neck and shoulders, shake out your arms and legs, and get away from your desk for a few minutes each day. It will feel good to have a little break.
4. Improve your posture
Over time, bad posture can lead to all sorts of aches and pains. While at your desk, be sure to sit up straight, have your shoulders pulled back, and keep your knees and hips at a right angle. Set up your desk so everything is in position to encourage good posture - have your monitor at eye level to keep your neck straight, keep your keyboard and mouse at a distance so that your elbows and wrist can be straight, and make sure your chair is set so that your feet rest flat on the floor. This will reduce unnecessary strain on your body that can come back to hurt you in future years.
5. Ditch the chair
Sitting on a balance ball rather than a chair for the duration of the day is a great way to work out your core muscles by doing nothing more than sitting at your desk. By trying to keep your balance all day, the muscles will get a nice workout that a regular chair just cannot provide.
Working a sedentary job is no longer an excuse to put on pounds. Take the steps that are necessary to make your office a place of work and activity.