Don’t Accept the Sedentary Lifestyle: Being Active Can Only Make You Better!
When I was studying in the library in college and dreamed of what my future career would be like I never thought, “Gee, I’d like to be glued to my computer and sit 7 hours a day.” But when I traded in my waitressing job for a professional office job, I quickly realized that most jobs where our brains do the majority of the work means a whole lot more sitting. Good for the knowledge economy, bad for my butt.
Dr. James Levine of the Mayo Clinic has found that, “Americans spend more than half their waking hours sitting — primarily watching TV, driving and working at a desk.” This is especially bad considering the acute obesity epidemic we are facing.
Although we are trending toward an increasingly sedentary society, it’s not our destiny. So what can we do about it?
Here are a few things we have done at Uncharted Play to combat sedentary office work. Feel free to take these ideas and use them, build upon them, and share your tactics for being an active office worker with us.
- Make it a Competition. We have created a game around being active. We set an alarm to get up every hour and do push-ups, sit-ups, or a yoga move. You don’t lose anything if you miss a round, but peer pressure still works wonders!
- Team Support. We support each other to tear ourselves away from our work, get up, walk around, go outside and breathe some fresh air. Whether it’s getting coffee, taking a walk to the far bathroom, or just catching a glimpse of the sun, we work together to make sure we’re all moving our legs more each day.
- Make It Fun. Physical activity doesn’t always need to be boring or mundane. Often, our team is fully active just by trying out upcoming products and kicking around the SOCCKET. If you struggle to break into standard exercise every hour, consider getting a hula hoop or skip-it in the office. You’ll be surprised how easy it is to exercise when you’re having fun!
- Make or buy a standing desk Even if you can’t buy a new desk, stand while you read email and type articles. We’ve found that we’re actually less tired now that we stand more.
Forbes author Kate Taylor explores the benefits of standing desks here.
Need some facts to support your active office working campaign? Check out this infographic from OnlineCollegeCourses.com that shows the benefits of being active (note to bosses: exercise has been shown to increase productivity!).