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Written by Katie Bopp

7 Practical Tips to Stay Active & Healthy During the Work Day

If you work in an office, you spend the majority of your work day sitting: Driving to work, sitting at your desk, sitting in meetings, sitting in the break room, and driving home. It’s challenging to be physically active and to eat healthy with this busy – but sedentary – lifestyle.

Before joining the Athena team, I spent years working in offices. I developed some habits to stay active and eat healthy in the office, which helped to prevent that tired, lethargic feeling I’d otherwise have by the afternoon. Give these a try and let us know how it goes!

  • Use your lunch hour to get outside or to the gym. I’d usually walk to a neighborhood behind the office complex and run a few miles. You can eat your lunch at your desk while checking emails later in the afternoon. My boss didn’t mind, as long as I was still being productive.
  • Keep a gym bag with sneakers and workout clothes in your car. If you have your sneakers, there’s no excuse not to go for a walk over a break.
  • Pack a lunch and snacks. There are always temptations in the break room, like a dozen donuts or leftover cake. Your coworkers are probably going to ask you to go out to eat with them. It’s easier to say “no” if you already have a lunch waiting for you and healthy snacks to fill you up so you can avoid the donuts.
  • Bring a yoga mat for rainy days. Don’t let a rainy day stop you from exercising if you typically go outside over your break (like I always did). Keep a yoga mat in your car to bring inside on a rainy day for a bodyweight workout with exercises such as push ups, mountain climbers, planks, lunges, etc. Close your office door or use an empty conference room. Try FitnessBlender on YouTube for ideas.
  • Park farther away. So simple, but why not park in the last row of the parking lot? You squeeze in a little extra walking before going inside to your desk.
  • Race the elevator. Unless you physically need to use the elevator, take the stairs instead. I’d usually make it to the second floor before the elevator did – Fun challenge!
  • Get up from your desk. Take a few laps around the hallway, a conference room or up and down the stairs. Walk a loop around the parking lot. Or make countless trips downstairs to the copier everyday, like I did!

All of these became a part of my everyday routine, so none of it was difficult but something that I looked forward to doing – especially my lunchtime workout. It was such a refreshing break to get out of the office and clear my mind!

How do you keep yourself motivated and accountable to stay active during the work week?