We all know the struggles of staying fit while sitting at a desk all day—sore back, no time for exercise, eyes bloodshot from staring down at the computer all day. It can be painful to think about all the time you spend sitting during the week and exercising, and meal prepping can feel overwhelming after a busy day at work.
Luckily, here at TouchCare, we’ve identified this problem and have listed a few tips to help you stay fit while at your desk job. Over the last few months, a group of us here have taken some time out of our busy work day to become a little healthier, a little stronger, and a little happier throughout the week. The biggest change we made was making time for exercise, even if it’s just for a half hour at lunch time. For me personally, exercise is as much a stress relief and mental workout as it is physical, so it’s important to break a sweat during those busy times just to hit the reset button.
Exercise, along with a few other work lifestyle alterations, have really made an impact on the type of relationship we have with each other, as well as with our work-life balance. And it’s not just me that feels this way. According to research, a healthy and happy workforce can reduce costs by more than $1,600 per employee, with reduced leave days caused by disability or unplanned sickness.
Here are 5 ideas that will inspire you and your coworkers to get out and get healthy!
1. Join a fitness studio that offers lunch time classes. Here at TouchCare, a few of us are part of a fitness membership program that lets you try out different work out classes in your area for a set price per month. We try out anything from Pilates to Yoga to Barre to Cycling! Our goal is to get in one group class per week during our lunch hour, so we use that time wisely, and don’t overwhelm our schedules even more.
2. Keep healthy snacks on hand. Many studies have linked stress and snacking. But even if you’re not stressed, you’re probably familiar with the 3 pm post-lunch slump. Keep some healthy snacks close by so you’re not tempted to hit the vending machine. Snacks that you can keep in your desk drawer - like almonds, dried fruits and granola bars - can help satisfy your hunger better than a bag of salty chips.
3. Go the distance… for lunch. Maybe you have a favorite sandwich chain or salad bar. Find a location that is a few blocks away instead of right on your corner. While not always possible outside of the city life, you can make the effort by just going for a walk before breaking into your lunchbox.
4. Throw a healthy potluck at the office. By bringing in healthy meals for you and your coworkers to snack on, you’re not only saving money and calories, but also getting inspired for new ideas in the future. Many people choose to eat elsewhere during lunchtime because they are bored by the same PB&J or boring Caesar. Bringing in a fun healthy dish (think lettuce wraps, Mediterranean chicken kebabs, vegetable lasagna, etc.) can help to switch up your routine.
5. Create an accountability cohort. This has been key to our ability to prioritize well-being at work. Not only does working together as a group make everything more fun and social, it also helps hold me accountable. On days where I’m feeling lethargic, my coworkers are there to help encourage me to get to class, go for a walk, or choose the healthy option!
Lastly, Keep your health up to date with TouchCare. We all use TouchCare to keep up-to-date on our health and the health of our families. TouchCare helps make it easy to stay accountable with my annual check-ups and screenings so I am proactive with my own health. Whether it’s finding an MRI facility for a child, or just finding out when we are eligible for our annual physical, TouchCare is there to help us to figure it out. With our Health Assistants taking care of it, we don’t have to worry about it while we are at work!
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