Staying healthy (21)
- Cosmetic surgery: What to know beforehand
- Vaccines for adults: Which do you need?
- Bone health: Tips to keep your bones healthy
- see all in Staying healthy
Dental care (7)
- Oral health: Brush up on dental care basics
- Oral health: A window to your overall health
- Calcium and calcium supplements: Achieving the right balance
- see all in Dental care
Skin care (17)
- Best sunscreen: Understand sunscreen options
- Sunless tanning: What you need to know
- Tattoos: Understand risks and precautions
- see all in Skin care
Nail care (1)
- Fingernails: Do's and don'ts for healthy nails
Eye care (9)
- Eye injury: Tips to protect vision
- Contact lenses: What to know before you buy
- LASIK eye surgery
- see all in Eye care
- Sleep aids: Understand over-the-counter options
- Napping: Do's and don'ts for healthy adults
- Sleep deprivation: Know the risks
- see all in Sleep
Mental health (11)
- Mental health: What's normal, what's not
- Empty nest syndrome: Tips for coping
- Friendships: Enrich your life and improve your health
- see all in Mental health
Healthy relationships (10)
- Forgiveness: Letting go of grudges and bitterness
- Domestic violence against men: Know the signs
- Domestic violence against women: Recognize patterns, seek help
- see all in Healthy relationships
Healthy at work (11)
- Workplace exercises: How to burn calories at work
- Desk stretches: How-to video collection
- Office ergonomics: Your how-to guide
- see all in Healthy at work
Workplace exercises: How to burn calories at work
You may spend your workdays at a desk, but you don't need to take it sitting down. Make workplace exercises — from fitness breaks to walking meetings — part of your routine.By Mayo Clinic staff
If you're doing your best to set aside time for physical activity either before work or after work, good for you — but finding time to exercise can be a challenge for anyone who has a busy schedule. Why not work out while you're at work? Consider 10 ways to make workplace exercises part of your routine.
No. 1: Make the most of your commute
Walk or bike to work. If you ride the bus or the subway, get off a few blocks early or at an earlier stop than usual and walk the rest of the way. If you drive to work, park at the far end of the parking lot — or park in the lot for a nearby building. In your building, take the stairs rather than the elevator.
No. 2: Look for opportunities to stand
You'll burn more calories standing than sitting. Stand while talking on the phone. Better yet, try a standing desk — or improvise with a high table or counter. Eat lunch standing up. Trade instant messaging and phone calls for walks to other desks or offices.
No. 3: Take fitness breaks
Rather than hanging out in the lounge with coffee or a snack, take a brisk walk or do some gentle stretching. For example, face straight ahead, then lower your chin to your chest. Or, while standing, grab one of your ankles — or your pant leg — and bring it up toward your buttock. Hold each stretch for 15 to 30 seconds.
No. 4: Trade your office chair for a fitness ball
Consider trading your desk chair for a firmly inflated fitness or stability ball, as long as you're able to safely balance on the ball. You'll improve your balance and tone your core muscles while sitting at your desk. You can even use the fitness ball for wall squats or other workplace exercises during the day.
No. 5: Keep fitness equipment in your work area
Store resistance bands — stretchy cords or tubes that offer weight-like resistance when you pull on them — or small hand weights in a desk drawer or cabinet. Do arm curls between meetings or tasks.Next page
(1 of 2)
- McCrady SK, et al. Sedentariness at work: How much do we really sit? Obesity. 2009;17:2103.
- Beers EA, et al. Increasing passive energy expenditure during clerical work. European Journal of Applied Physiology. 2008;103:353.
- Levine JA, et al. The energy expenditure of using a "walk-and-work" desk for office workers with obesity. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2007;41:558.
- Thompson WG, et al. Feasibility of a walking workstation to increase daily walking. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2008;42:225.
- Levine JA, et al. Move a Little, Lose a Lot. New York, N.Y.: Crown Publishing Group; 2009:53.
- 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/guidelines/default.aspx. Accessed June 23, 2011.
- Armiger P, et al. Stretching for Functional Flexibility. Philadelphia, Pa.: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins; 2010:141.
- Ohlinger CM, et al. The effect of active workstation use on measures of cognition, attention, and motor skill. Journal of Physical Activity and Health. 2011;8:119.