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Staying Fit While at Work

If you work in an office, especially at a desk, you might not get the opportunity for too much movement or activity during the day. However, there are some things you can do in the office setting to build muscle, burn calories and work on your fitness. These ideas come courtesy of Hailee Wingfield, MA, CISSN, ACSM EP-C, GFI, AHC, a fitness specialist with WakeMed’s Healthworks Fitness & Wellness Center.
  • Take the Stairs: First and foremost, always take the stairs and avoid the elevator.  Imagine how many extra calories you can burn!
  • Park Farther Away: In another effort to add steps to your day, park farther away from your building, and walk farther to your office’s front doors.
  • More Walking: If you can, walk to lunch, walk around the parking lot or walk your workplace’s hallways during your lunch break.  In general, we should all be walking at least 30 minutes per day for good health.
  • Stand Up: Stand as much as possible while at your desk, for example, while reading or talking on the phone.  Research has shown that more standing leads to a smaller waistline.
  • Calf Raises: If you ever find yourself standing and waiting, either at someone’s door or for a meeting to begin, do some calf raises.  Go from tippy toes to flat feet several times in a row to help build your calf muscles.
  • Wall Push-ups: Choose a wall in your office or workspace, and do some push-ups against it.  Move your feet farther away from the wall to make the push-ups more challenging.
  • Back Strengthening: Just by sitting straight up in your chair, sitting nice and tall and pulling your shoulder blades back and toward each other, you can strengthen your back.
  • Seated Crunches: Also strengthen your abs while sitting in your chair.  Pull your knees up to your elbows and crunch!
  • Bicycle Legs & Climbing Stairs: With your legs under your desk, build a solid core by moving your legs in a circular “bicycle riding” motion or as if you are climbing stairs.
  • Sit-to-Stand Squats: In a non-rolling chair, slowly bring yourself from a sitting to a standing position.  This can be done multiple times in a row to help build your legs.
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