Let’s be honest, desk jobs don’t do much for healthy habits when you’re generally in the same position 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. You’ll start to wish you hadn’t eaten that cheeseburger for your lunch break or that you probably should have went to the gym before you started work or the fact that you’ve become so lazy (or busy!) that the amount of clutter has started to build up around your desk, you struggle to even find things sometimes. But fear not, there are simple ways of getting yourself back on track and actually sticking to it, this time!
1. First things first, ditch the morning (or afternoon) coffee - yes, we’re serious.
We know this may be completely impossible for some of you but at least try and reduce your coffee intake because this can, over time, lead to serious fatigue and dependency and will initially just do the opposite to what you think it will do for you. Instead, opt for something that will benefit you like fresh icy water and if this is too boring for you, add slices of lemon, oranges or limes to add more flavour. Alternatively, a fruit smoothie is always a treat by getting the benefits of all your vitamins through the slurp of a straw.
2. Start off on the right foot - walk, walk, walk!
When you’re sitting for nearly 40 hours a week, walking should be your new best friend. Cheat your way to as much walking opportunities as possible by parking your car as far as you can from your office building to give you the chance to get a good power walk before you start a full days hard work. If you use public transport to get to work, get off one stop early and walk the rest of the way. A great little power walk never hurt anyone.
3. Try not to eat at your desk, at all.
There have been so many studies conducted on how much bacteria and germs build up around your desk and especially your computer/laptop. This is worse for those that sit and eat their lunch at their desk every single day without cleaning before or after their meal. If you absolutely must have to eat t your desk, at least have some anti-bacterial disinfecting wipes around to clean the area and your keyboard before and after you’ve done munching your sandwich. And since you’re at it, wipe down your computer, mouse and everything else around you.
4. Prepare yourself for a snack-attack.
It happens all the time, you have your lunch and it was extremely tasty and an hour after consuming, you seem to be hungry again. Instead of rummaging through your wallet to get change for the vending machine for a quick sweet/savoury treat, make sure you’ve got healthy snacks stashed somewhere for hunger emergencies. Make sure they’re healthy and energy-boosting like popcorn, nuts and chocolate (as long as it’s dark, that’s the healthy kind) but do also prepare yourself for the day with a portion of fresh fruit, low-fat yoghurt and raw vegetables with low-fat dip/dressing. Also always make sure you keep you hands clean before and after snacking.
5. Do some mini desk-ercises!
Luckily for some, some offices actually provide a gym whilst some offices are very open space and don’t have doors for individual office desks. To keep yourself active, it would be advisable to take mini breaks whenever possible by going for a walk round the office block to stretch your legs and circulate some fresh air to your brain. You could even go as far as changing your desk chair to a gym ball to improve your posture and do 15-30 second mini leg lifts under your desk.
These little tips and tricks are all achievable with the help of self-motivation but the main priority to keeping your overall self healthy at work is to know what you’re capable of doing and motivating yourself to do all these little tricks. Even if it is waking up an hour earlier than you normally would to spend some time at the gym, to walking to work instead of using your regular transportation or even cutting out certain foods from your diet, over time you’ll get used to it every day and see positive little changes in your health and well-being.