If you’re a busy professionals, you probably spend a lot of time sitting — in your car, at your desk, on the couch. Most jobs don’t allow for a lot of movement throughout the day, and while that 30-minute workout you might take after office hours does help, it isn’t much compared to the time spent sitting at work, watching TV, or sleeping.
The health effects of sitting all day can be harsh; working an inactive job increases your risk of stroke, heart problems, back and spinal issues, and diabetes.
To help you increase your health and lower your risks, here are a few easy ways to stay mentally and physically active during the day:
1. Get up earlier
Set your alarm half an hour to 45 minutes earlier than you normally would, and try to squeeze in a quick workout. Starting your day with brisk exercise can really help get your adrenaline pumping as well as provide you with more energy for the start of the day.
Making time for a morning jog or a session of sit-ups are both easy ways to stay active and can lead to a world of difference; you just have to be willing to make the time for it.
2. Move around
Instead of sitting in the office lunch room during breaks, go for a walk, walk up and down the stairs a few times, or do some simple stretches. If you have to communicate with someone, walk over and talk to them directly instead of sending them an email.
Even simply standing up at your desk for a few minutes when you’re in the middle of working on something helps. Moving around at work is important for your health, but it also can help you refocus and gain some mental clarity in the middle of a stressful workday.
3. Take the stairs
It’s amazing how many fully fit people opt for the elevator in the morning. If you’re guilty of this habit as well, start taking the stairs.
It’s one of the few options most offices have in regards to a slightly strenuous activity, and while it might not seem like much, taking the stairs a few times a day starts to add up. After all, any physical activity is better than none.
4. Manage stress
Of course it’s easier said than done, but learning how to manage stress can greatly affect mental health. Stress can be distracting, depressing, and overwhelming, which ultimately affects your mental stability. Practice deep breathing exercises, and make sure to get enough sleep to start managing a stressful lifestyles.
Speaking of sleep, getting enough sleep is essential to staying mentally active. Sleep helps consolidate memories and “reboot” brain function for the next day. Going to bed early enough is key to catching enough sleep during your work week.
What do you do to stay active even when you have a busy schedule?