Linking Daily Routines to Fitness Activities

Over half of the workers surveyed felt they had gained weight or lost fitness because of long hours spent at their desks and eight in ten were looking for ways to fit more exercise into their daily routine. Many of us work at least 40 hours a week and we only get up from our desks an average of three times a day and often spend four hours or more each day sitting without getting up. This sedentary office routine is increasingly detrimental to our health. There is a solution. Identify fitness activities that you can perform at work and link those “exercises” with your daily office routine and develop new healthy “work” habits. By doing so you will keep active throughout your day and may even allow you to surpass the level of fitness that you would achieve in a shorter time at the gym. An example would be installing a chin­up bar in the doorway to your office and performing chin ups or pull ups EVERY time you pass through. Even if you can only do one or two at the start, if you do them they will soon add up to 10, 12 or over 20 every day, that’s easily 50 to 100 every week ­ think that will make some positive changes to your fitness and physique? And how many can you perform in your shorter gym time? Three, maybe five? To make it work, you must make it a habit. In the chin up bar example, you must do them EVERY time you pass by or through. Or using another example, if you make routine trips to the office copier or even the toilet, find a more distant or challenging route that involves stairs and distance or laps. Once you establish your new route, you must follow it EVERY time you travel to that destination ­ until it becomes a habit. If this interferes with your productivity, then concentrate on completing your route in a shorter amount of time, a “race” if you will. The goal of this approach is to turn your long, unhealthy sedentary eight­hour day into eight hours interspersed with short periods of movement, and fitness activities linked to your everyday work routines until they become new and healthy fitness habits. Look around your office, trace your path from the car park to your desk. Are there stairs that you can use? Instead of taking the shortest route to every destination, search the most challenging path. Chart your daily routine and develop your own challenging personal fitness boot camp of “micro­workouts” tied to each of these activities