If you feel like you spend the majority of your time at work, you are not alone. For so many of us, we spend our days chained to a desk. Eight hours in an office is bad enough, but when you factor in lengthy commutes, some of us are sitting on our behinds for upwards of ten hours a day -- at least!
This sedentary lifestyle increases your risk for heart disease, obesity, diabetes, and other life-threatening conditions.
Here at BodyRock, we believe in moving your body as often as possible. Busting out some exercises between conference calls will not put you in peak physical condition but it will help. These moves will help build strength and even torch you an extra calorie or two.
Remember: every little bit counts!
Start improving your health today! Get yourself moving with some of these exercise suggestions:
1) Twinkle Toes:
Tap your toes as quickly as you can under your desk. Better yet, stand up in front of a small trash can. raise your leg, tap your toe on the edge of the can, then switch legs.
2) Own the stairs:
Elevate your heart rate by taking the stairs. Not only will you avoid small talk in the elevator, you can really get your blood flowing. If you are feeling particularly ambitious, take the steps two at a time!
3) Be the wanderer:
Walking is one of the most underrated exercises of all. Take a little stroll down the hall to visit a co-worker. Don't send emails to the office two doors down, why not deliver the message in person?
For Legs and Butt:
4) Wall Sits:
Wall sits build strength and endurance. And they can be done anywhere, really. Well, anywhere with a wall. Stand with your back against the wall, bend your knees and slide your back down until your thighs are parallel with the floor. Hold this position for 30-60 seconds. If you want to increase your burn, try crossing your right ankle over your left knee, hold for 15 seconds and then switch.
Standing isn't exactly exercise but it is better for you than sitting. Standing helps to increase your daily calorie expenditure. Stand whenever you can. Next time you have a meeting, suggest it become a standing meeting. Or, better yet, make it a walking meeting.
6) Become the Patient Printer:
The next time you find yourself waiting by the copy machine or printer for any length of time, why not work your calves with some calf raises? Stand with your feet shoulder width apart, rise to the tips of your toes, pause and then lower yourself back down. Do 3 sets of 12-15 reps.
7) Seated Leg Raiser:
This is a good one to try if you are feeling shy about exercising in the office. When seated at your desk, straighten one or both legs and hold in place for 5 seconds or longer. Lower your leg(s) back to the ground but don't let your feet touch the floor and repeat (or alternate if you are doing one leg at a time). Do 15 reps. If this isn't enough for you, try looping a purse or a bag around your ankle for extra weight.
8) The Desk Squat:
Begin by standing with your feet together, bend your knees until your thighs are nearly parallel to the floor, like you were going to sit in your chair. As you are bending, raise your arms straight in the air or toward your computer screen. Keep your knees together. Hold for 15 seconds, release and repeat for 4-6 reps.
9) The Grim Reamer:
Look for a ream of paper or a sealed package of printing paper. While you are seated, place the paper between your knees and press your legs inward, engaging the inner thighs. Keeps squeezing the paper for 30-60 seconds while you go about your business. You are a master multi-tasker!
For Shoulders and Arms:
10) Cubicle Dip:
Time to bust out your tricep dips at the office! Use a sturdy desk or a non-rolling chair. Sit on the edge, place your hands on either side of your body, gripping the edge. Plant your feet on the floor, a step or two away from the desk/chair. Straighten your arms to lift your body, now, bend your arms to reach 90 degrees so your body dips down. Hold the pose then, straighten your arms to raise the body back above the desk/chair. Do 8-10 reps.
11) Stapler Curl:
Grab a stapler with one hand, palm facing up. Beginning near the thigh, bend your elbow, curling your hand toward your chest -- just like a regular bicep curl. Pause at the top and then slowly lower the stapler back down. Do 12-15 reps and then switch arms. If you don't have a stapler that is heavy enough, try a full water bottle or a heavy purse.
12) The Namaste:
If you are looking for more defined arms, this move can help. Sit upright with your feet flat on the floor. Bring your palms together in front of your chest and push them together until you feel your arm muscles contract. Keep pushing for 20 seconds. Release the pose and then repeat.
13) The Office Genie:
Raise your legs so you are sitting cross-legged. Using the arm rest, push up to lift your body off the chair. Hold yourself off the chair for 10-20 seconds. Slowly lower yourself back into the chair, rest a minute, and then repeat.
For Chest, Neck and Back:
14) The Shoulder Shrug:
This one is easy. Raise both shoulders toward your ears, hold for 5 seconds, and release. Repeat for 15 reps. If you need something more, try this move while standing and holding a ream of paper in each hand.
15) The Pencil Pinch:
Work your traps by rolling back your shoulders until your shoulder blades are pinched together. Imagine that you are holding a pencil between them -- heck, do it for real if you feel so inclined! Hold for 5-10 seconds, release and repeat for 12-15 reps.
16) The Pinstripe Push-up:
This is a modified wall push-up. Find a sturdy wall, stand one or two feet away and lean forward until your palms are flat against the wall, with your arms straight and parallel to the ground. Now, bend at the elbows, bringing your body toward the wall, hold for 2 seconds and then return to the starting position. Do 12-15 reps.
For the Core:
17) The Desk Chair Swivel:
Use your swivel chair to work your obliques! Sit up straight with your feet hovering over the floor. Hold the edge of your desk with your fingers and thumb. Use your core to swivel the chair side to side. Go back and forth for 15 rounds.
18) The Desk Chair Wheel:
While sitting in a chair with wheels, place yourself at arm's length from your desk or table, and grasp the edge with your hands. Engage your core, lift your feet off the ground, pull with your arms until the chair rolls forward and your chest touches the desk edge. Now, with feet still raised, push to roll the chair back. Repeat 20 times.
19) The Fab Abs Squeeze:
This is a move you can pull out anytime. Take a deep breath and tighten your abdominal muscles, bringing them toward your spine as you exhale. Keep your abs squeezed for 5-10 seconds and then release. Do 12-15 reps.
20) The Crunch:
Place both elbows on your thighs. Try to curl your chest toward your legs while resisting the movement with your arms. Hold for 10 seconds, release and repeat 10 times.
As we said earlier, these workouts aren't going to give you top-tier fitness results but they will help you make exercise a habitual part of your life. If you are already busting out regular workout that's amazing -- truly, but you can (and should) go that extra mile by moving more during the course of the day! If you find yourself lacking in workout ideas, check out over 80 hours of on demand workouts with Sweatflix℠
! It is all of your favorite BodyRock workouts in one place and with new content added all the time, you'll never be bored again!
Don't be shy! Maybe you'll start an office trend!