Your parents and teachers may have told you sit still, but don’t listen! Go ahead and fidget while you read this article. It’s one creative way to burn a few more calories when you’re at work.
Sometimes, getting through the day (between work, errands, housework and running the family taxi service) can be nothing short of a miracle! Needless to say, it’s not always easy to find time for a full workout. However, there are ways you can fit fitness into every day, even if you forgo the gym a few times.
1. Take the stairs (you’ll save time!)
Taking the stairs is one of the simplest ways to add a fitness boost to your day. And believe it or not, opting for the stairs rather than the elevator will actually save you time in the long run (no pun intended)—a recent study confirmed it. Thank you, science.
2. Use a smartwatch or other fitness wearable
These helpful little tools don’t just monitor your activity—they also encourage you to be more active. One popular smartwatch, for instance, uses a simple visual reward (you get to close a ring) if you stand, move and exercise at intervals throughout the day. Each fitness tracker comes with its own downloadable app that tracks metrics like your activity levels, your workouts, your nutrition and, in some cases, even your sleep patterns.
Soon, you’ll find yourself popping over to a co-worker’s desk instead of sending an email, just to get more steps in.
3. Try active video games when you get home
Let’s be honest: while video games that incorporate exercise aren’t better than training for a marathon, they’re a vast improvement to sitting on the couch and watching TV. Why not get the whole family involved in lieu of movie night?
4. Stand up
If your job requires you to be sedentary, consider the merits of a standing desk—you don’t even necessarily need a new desk! There are super affordable, portable versions that can be placed on an existing desk to convert it into a standing desk.
If a standing desk doesn’t appeal to you, just make sure you stand up more throughout the day. When you take a drink of your water, tea or coffee, stand up!
Yes, really! Research shows that people who fidget (think: tapping their toes, drumming their fingers and pacing while talking on the phone) burn more calories and weigh less than those who don’t. There’s even a name for it: non-exercise activity thermogenesis, or NEAT.
6. Sit up straight
Engaging your postural muscles while sitting, rather than slouching, can help work all sorts of muscles and contribute to overall fitness.
7. Take the bus to work
Typically, taking public transit involves more walking and movement than driving. Better yet, walk or bike to work. Or, if active transportation isn’t possible for your commute, try it for running errands.