It’s a challenge many hard-working Americans face each day – how to stay fit while having to meet the demands of a sometimes physically and mentally exhausting occupation.
If you find yourself feeling too tired after a long day at the office to do anything but stream Netflix, or so stressed that you consider a healthy meal a cup of coffee and a granola bar, take heart. There are ways you can balance your responsibilities and be healthy, despite life in a cube. All it takes are some simple, healthy changes to your lifestyle and work habits. Here are some ways to stay healthy if you happen to work in an office.
Start each day with a wholesome breakfast.
You need energy to work at and be your best, especially during the first half of your day. A healthy, filling breakfast will provide that early boost and help prevent you from satisfying your morning hunger by consuming junk food on the job.
Refrain from sugary snacks and beverages.
While satisfying a craving, sugary snacks won’t nourish you. Plus, they’ll trigger a series of sugar highs and lows, giving you energy one moment, then making you sleepy or sluggish the next. As a substitute, bring some healthy snacks from home such as whole or sliced fruit, baby carrots, nuts, or cheese sticks. If you really need a sweet treat, opt for a piece of dark chocolate. Also avoid sodas, energy drinks and sugary drinks. These may help you stay awake while working, but they are filled with empty calories. If you need caffeine, a single cup of coffee or green tea should be sufficient.
Bring your own lunch to work.
Not only will this save you money, but it will spare you the high number of calories, salt and fats contained in most restaurant and fast food meals. That will make it easier for you to maintain a healthy weight.
Drink plenty of water throughout the workday.
You need at least eight, 8-ounce glasses per day to stay properly hydrated and alert, so you might as well refresh yourself during those hours at work. It will also make it easier for you to avoid soda or coffee, as well as other cravings. To add some flavor, add a slice of lemon or lime in your water bottle.
Get up and move around as much as possible.
Sitting at your desk all day isn’t good for your joints, posture, digestion or circulation. Work standing up as much as possible. Take breaks every hour or so. Stretch your legs and walk around the office. Instead of calling or emailing a coworker, go directly to his or her desk, then capture your conversation in a follow-on email. If you need to visit a department on another floor, take the stairs instead of the elevator. It’s not only good for your muscles and joints, but it also helps burn calories.
Remain active in your free time.
Don’t just lounge around at home after work watching television. Your eyes need a break and your body needs some stimulating exercise to relieve any stress. Get out and about. Go for walks or join a gym if you have to. When at home, spend time with your family, call a friend, listen to music, cook, or read a book – whatever is beneficial to your mind, body, and soul.
Sitting all day, staring at a computer, performing repetitive tasks. These activities can make for injury and pain. Focus on correcting your posture at your desk and ensuring that your equipment is easily accessible so you are not straining. Work to keep your Smartphone or computer at eye level and try to exercise your eyes, wrists, shoulders, neck and back as much as possible to keep them nimble and flexible. Ask your human resources department for standing desks, ergonomic workstations and non-harsh lighting. Ensure there are no vents blowing cold air on your head and that glare is reduced on your screen. If your company offers an ergonomic advisor to evaluate your workstation, be sure to take advantage of that benefit.
Be sure to get enough sleep.
Seven to eight hours per night is recommended, but the quality of your sleep is just as important as the quantity. Getting quality sleep on a regular basis will help you wake up feeling strong and refreshed in the movie – and ready for a whole new day at the office.
Work-related drama or co-workers who drain your energy can tear your down over time. Rise above it! Always have a positive word; compliment people to boost them up, thereby making you feel good. It won’t take long for work drama to find its way into your head, heart and home. Compartmentalize as best you can work and home life. If it gets unbearable, seek therapy, meditate or, if you can, find a new job.
Intercoastal Medical Group is a multi-specialty practice specializing in primary care, and much more. With more than 100 physicians in eight locations across Sarasota and Manatee County, we make it easy to find a qualified doctor at a location that’s convenient for you. For more information about our services or to schedule an appointment with one of our doctors, find the Intercoastal Medical Group location closest to you in Sarasota and Manatee County.
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