Getting up in the morning and putting in 8 hours of work at office sitting before a computer on a chair has become customary for most us on weekdays. Yes, we do have pit stops in between for a heavy breakfast/meal, sometimes for no apparent reason other than being so yummy. And eventually, it’s time to go home and hit the bed. It appears as if we are logging hour after idle hour with our bums glued to our seats one-way or the other. This mechanical, sedentary lifestyle coupled with inadequate conditioning is no doubt putting us at obvious health risks.
Fitness has more to do with the lifestyle than the work that we are subjected to. Any exercise is better than none.
Being caught up at work all day cannot be the reason for skipping exercise. There are quite a few simple and effective ways where you can burn a few calories even within an office environment. Let’s turn the office into a place where you get your exercise groove on and not feel embarrassed, ashamed, or inappropriate.
High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is one of the best ways to maximize your workout time. It is super-efficient and is the ideal workout for a busy schedule. Most importantly, you don't need any special equipment to get it done. You can do this in your office, at home while watching TV – almost ANYWHERE! Research shows you can achieve more in a mere 15 minutes of interval training (done three times a week) than a girl jogging on the treadmill for an hour. It helps you ease the stresses of work, improves cardiovascular fitness, build lean muscle & drop fat, increases metabolism, reduce your perception of pain, allows you sleep more deeply, and keep you rejuvenated.
Complete 3 sets with 20 seconds of work and 10 seconds of rest between each move.
- Jab, cross, front (right side): Stand with the right foot in front of the left, hips facing to your left side. Bring your arms up into a boxing position. Jab (punch) forward with the right arm, then throw a "cross" punch with the left arm, letting your body rotate as your left arm crosses over your body to the right. Your weight should be over your right foot, with your back heel picking up off the floor slightly. Bring both arms back into the body, shifting your weight back to the starting position and facing front. (This is the "front" move.)
- Jab, cross, front (left side): Repeat the above on the opposite side.
- Jumping jacks: Start by standing upright with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at your sides. Jump your feet out while raising your arms. Repeat as fast as possible. If a regular jumping jack is too difficult, step side to side while raising your arms instead.
- Sumo squats: Position your feet a little more than hip-width apart and point your toes out at a 45-degree angle. Keeping your weight in your heels, back flat and chest upright, lower yourself until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Engage your glutes and quads and push back to the start position. Repeat.
Cool down with an overhead stretch, reverse lunge and forward fold.
Try to do as many reps as possible during each 45-second interval, then rest for 15 seconds. Complete three rounds, with a one-minute recovery between rounds.
- Pushups: If you can't complete a traditional pushup, place your hands on a stable chair or plyo box instead of the floor. Or, try doing pushups with your knees resting on the ground.
- Squats: For extra assistance, use a chair for added support. Remember to keep your feet under your hips and your bodyweight in your heels, says Justin.
- Butt kicks: Jog or walk in place, kicking your right heel up to touch your bottom. Repeat with the left leg.
- Tricep dips: Place your hands on a chair or a low table, with your back to the chair. Put your legs straight out while balancing on your palms. Bending from your elbows, lower as far as you can, then press up to the original position. Engage that core!
- Side Lunges: With your bodyweight in your heels and your toes facing forwards, step to the left in a deep lateral lunge, keeping your knee above your toes. Alternate legs.
Cool down with an overhead stretch, a quad stretch and a forward fold.
Try to do as many reps as possible during each 45-second interval, then rest for 15 seconds. Complete three rounds, with a one-minute recovery between rounds. See above for exercise descriptions.
• Butt kicks
• Tricep dips
• Side lunges
• Jumping jacks
Cool down with an overhead stretch, a reverse lunge, a quad stretch and a forward fold, holding each move for 30 seconds.
So, maximise the intervals and get on with it.
"Motivation is what gets you started and habit is what keeps you going!"
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