As we moved into the digital age, more and more people are stuck hunched behind their computers working all day with little to no physical activity involved.
While a lot of us are no longer subject to back-breaking work like most of our fathers and mothers were, we still very much need to take care of our physical health if we want to live a healthy life. Also read: How to Avoid Weight Gain and Stay Fit During Lockdown
And we don’t just mean eating healthy and getting enough sleep. We also need to get a bit of exercise in, if we want to live our lives to the fullest – stronger muscles and bones mean a longer, and better quality of life, especially once we go over our 40s.
And it’s not always easy to find time to exercise. You may be so exhausted from work that when you get home, all you want to do is sleep. But with a bit of creativity, you can work those muscles even as you’re crunching numbers at the office.
Here are a few ways you can exercise while working from inside your office cubicle:
Wrist and Finger Exercises
Considering how much we type away on our phones and computers all day, our wrists and fingers tend to be extremely neglected. They don’t require much attention, but stretching them every once in a while goes a long way in relieving tension.
- Stretch your arms overhead, and to each side
- Rotate your wrists inward, then outward, ten times each way
- On the fifth rotation, add variety by spreading your fingers wide open, then closing to a fist
If you have a stress ball you can grip, or something more specific like a grip ring, that also helps to alleviate tension in your wrists and fingers – not to mention helps you increase your grip strength. Also read: 3 Activities You May Be Doing That Are Increasing Your Stress
Our shoulders take in a lot of tension while we’re sitting behind our desks typing away. Be sure not to neglect your shoulders by doing shoulder rolls at least twice during your workday.
- Draw your shoulders up as you’re inhaling
- As you exhale, draw them downward and slightly forward
- Repeat the above a few times, switching directions and drawing your shoulders downward and slightly backward
Another area in our body that takes in a lot of tension while we work our office jobs is our back and spine, and you can take a lot of this tension away with a simple exercise like the seated twist.
- Push your back against your chair’s backrest and stretch your arms over your head as you inhale
- As you exhale, slowly lower your arms to grasp the right armrest, twisting your body to the right as you do so
- Hold this position for 30 seconds, and repeat, but twisting to the left instead of the right
- Repeat until you’ve gotten 5 twists for each side. If your chair doesn’t have an armrest, hold your thigh instead for support.
Also read: Can Drinking Tea Boost Productivity At Work?
We often take breathing for granted – what’s there to think about anyway, it’s just breathing in, then out – but sometimes, we don’t realize that we’re taking shallow breaths through our mouths. And that helps to add to the tension that accumulates in our bodies throughout the day.
So be sure to practice deep, steady breaths through your nose – and don’t be shy in letting your chest and stomach slightly inflate as you do so.
Practicing these simple and easy exercises throughout your workday does a lot in minimizing the stress you inevitably accrue.
About the author:
Elliot Robinson is an international fitness model and a competitive athlete. When he’s not working towards competing at the Arnold Classic in Barcelona, he writes for Gunsmithfitness.com.