Question: Desk Exercise

Hi Lisa I spend A LOT of time at my desk and feel very fat doing it. Can you recommend any exercises for while I'm sitting behind my desk?

Answer

I LOVE the idea of taking the initiative and keeping fit even when you’re deskbound – it’s very possible! One of the key things to remember is that splitting up 30 minutes of exercise over the course of the day still equals 30 minutes over all. Squeezing in 3 intervals of high intensity exercise, ten minutes at a time, is an easy way to up your exercise quota.

Exercising in the office:

• Who needs a chair? Invest in an exercise ball and enjoy the many benefits of actively engaging your core rather than slouching at your desk. This is one of my FAVOURITE tips, as it means you can substitute HOURS of being sedentary for activity while you work. It also means you have an exercising tool at your disposal when you get a few minutes to get active.

• Swap the sit-down lunch for a walk and talk. A lunch-time break doesn´t have to be sedentary, so grab a smoothie and meet a friend at a park for your weekly catch-up.

• Move while you wait. If you added up all the time you spend waiting in a day, you’d be surprised – so use that time to move. Do side kicks while you wait for the kettle to boil or squeeze your abs while your emails download.

• Turn off technology. Rather than emailing your colleagues, walk to their desks.

• And the clock strikes 10! If you work from home or a secluded office, when the clock strikes the hour, use it as your cue to move! This is an important tip for guaranteed results if you’re desk-bound. Get up from your desk and do 10 push-ups, 10 dips, and a minute of ab crunches – if you do this five times a day, it will add up to about 10 minutes of exercise. Keep dumbbells on hand for these hourly sessions if you want to intensify your training.

• Take the stairs. In 10 minutes of climbing the stairs, a 60 kg woman will burn almost 336 kJ. (More than the approximate equivalent to a slice of bread)

• Put your multitasking talent to work. While chatting on the phone, walk around, climb stairs, do squats, lunges, side kicks or calf raises.

• Step it up. Get a pedometer and track how many steps you take each day. You should aim for 10 000. Find ways to increase your daily steps, for instance by parking further away and walking.

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