Monday, September 5, 2011

Quick tips to stay fit at work

A rigorous exercise regimen makes us all feel good but it is difficult to make time for it, Chaitrali Sardesai suggests quick and easy ways to stay fit at work

Exercising at work seems impossible. While we find it difficult to keep our hands off that packet of chips lying on our desks, the rest of us make frequent visits to the canteen to admire the spicy and tangy nibbles. It is okay to pander to your favourite food sometimes as long as you manage to burn those extra calories. So, how do you stay active and fit at work?

Doing the small things right
To be fit, one has to be mentally and physically agile along with a lot of energy and a positive frame of mind. "Fitness comes with a combination of willpower and determination. At work, one can do several things in order to be active. Activities such as bending down to pull out a file, stretching, walking up to your colleagues to deliver or receive messages or documents rather than using e-mails, getting up and fetching yourself a cup of coffee/ tea and other beverages instead of ordering it can also help in a large ways," says Manjushree Dandekar, a fitness trainer and expert.

"My workplace is very close to my residence, so I choose to walk it up. Walking to work is the best option since I can avoid signals, traffic and at the same time, reach work on time," says Gautam Karkhanis, a fitness freak. However, this is possible only for a few lucky ones. The others have a plethora of options such as using the stairs in the office instead of the elevators. You'll burn a large number of calories and increase your stamina this way. It is one of the easiest and most common ways to work out while on the go. Climbing up and down the stairs keeps away lethargy and inactivity. Those with workplaces at the top floors can try climbing atleast three to four floors. You may also try squeezing a sponge ball while you read documents, make official phone calls and talk to colleagues. This will reduce your stress levels, while strengthening the muscles of your palms and hands alongside.

Watch what you eat
Eating tiny, healthy meals every two hours would keep you away from lethargy which most of us experience after a heavy meal. Small intakes of food also keep you energetic throughout the day as your body gets the required nutrients to do so. You have to make sure that you consume energy-rich healthy foods. Keep away from junk food as much as possible. You may opt for fruits or fruit juices, a glass of toned milk, sandwiches and lots of salads. These are easily available at most of the canteens in offices and are quick and easy to make and carry from home.

Nowadays, a lot of bosses also encourage their employees to join yoga and aerobics classes. Some of them even have work-outs and exercising sessions conducted for their employees by fitness professionals. "Exercising and staying active at work can increase your level of productivity since your body and mind is active at every instant," says Manjushree.

You can also be innovative in the quest to stay fit. Concurs Sushama Soman, a businesswoman, "I have my own office so I conduct walking meetings instead of the ones in the conference room. It meets make me feel both active and fresh and my employees too like the idea of it."

Here are a few more simple tips to keep you moving:
- Park your car a little away from your workplace to ensure that you walk more.
- Take deep breaths from time to time to be more alert. It will relieve you from pressures and tensions.
- Use the restroom on another floor by taking the stairs. It will make you walk a few extra steps to keep you active.
- Walk while you take a phone call.
- Stretch whenever you feel like to ward off stiffness.
- Take breaks at regular intervals.
- Avoid binging into fried snacks.
- Opt for healthier options like fruits instead.

Keeping fit is not only about jogging or lifting heavy weights. It's about adding short bouts of easy and simple movements that help keep you agile and fit. Squeezing in a little time for yourself while at work, isn't that tough after all. If you're regular with it, you'll take pleasure in your job. You'll smile at your boss while he/ she mounts you up with more work. So get going today and make your way to fun and fitness at office!