Stuck at a desk all day? Here's how to stay fit while you're at work

We know full well that sitting at a desk for hours a day just isn’t good for us.

All our best intentions for a good posture can descend into being hunched over a computer. We sit on a chair on wheels, getting up only to nip to the toilet or make a quick cup of tea. Our eyes ache from gazing at screens.

Alas, we can’t all quit our office jobs and do work that’s out in nature (as nice as that may be).

So how can we start to counteract some of the damage being deskbound is doing?

The healthexperts at MyJuniper share their top tips.

Stretch at your desk

‘Take 30 seconds to stretch your body every half an hour or so,’ advise ther MyJuniper team. ‘Movements like this will get your blood pumping and your muscles reactivated, especially if you’re doing it regularly throughout the day.

‘Whether you’re touching your toes, stretching out your arms or doing a few sit-ups, you’ll be doing wonders for your body.’

Alternate between sitting and standing

If your workplace will provide a standing desk, snatch up that offer.

If not, perhaps try doing standing meetings (bonus: you might actually stick to a 30-minute limit when you’re not sitting down), or standing whenever you take a phone call.

‘If you alternate between sitting and standing, you will allow for improvement in your posture and circulation while you’re standing, which will alleviate the effects of sitting,’ say the experts.

‘If you’re standing up, your body is going to burn slightly more active calories than it would if you sat down; alongside this, if you’re already standing up, you’re more likely to walk around.’

Try a resistance band workout

‘To increase your fitness levels while you’re at your desk, you can do some simple resistance band workouts from the comfort of your chair,’ say MyJuniper.

‘You can begin by simply using the resistance band to complete some banded abductions by positioning the resistance band just above your knees and moving your legs in and out.

‘Otherwise, you could consider resistance band arm pulses, where you place the band around your forearms and raise your arms to a 90-degree angle.

‘Once you’re in position, you can slowly pull your arms away from each other, feeling the resistance as you do, try and aim for around 20 reps.’

Drink lots of water

You know it, we know it, so let’s actually make it happen: drinking plenty of water is important, and you probably need to drink more.

The experts say: ‘Drinking enough water while sitting down for the best part of the day is so important.

‘Not only will it stop you from becoming dehydrated, but it will also help to maintain blood pressure and your overall body temperature.

‘We’d advise that you should be drinking around 2 litres of water a day.

‘However, suppose you struggle to remember to drink water. In that case, we’d recommend purchasing a water bottle which can hold over a litre of water at a time or even set yourself a timer that goes off at increments throughout the day to remind you.’

Utilise your time outside of work

‘One of the best things to do if you are working from a desk all day is to ensure that you’re making the most of your time outside work,’ say MyJuniper. ‘If you have a transport-related commute to work, consider making the switch to either walking or cycling to the office.

‘If you’re unable to do this, or if you work from home, try and take yourself for a 30-minute walk before your work day and again once you’ve finished increasing your overall exercise levels.

‘Having a gym membership and being a regular gym-goer is excellent, but not everyone’s schedule allows them the luxury of doing so.

‘Still, these small changes will make enough impact for you to feel healthier.’

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