You already know you should move more. You are aware that a sedentary lifestyle has negative long-term impacts on your health, but you feel glued to your desk chair for hours on end. What if you could burn more calories every day by adding some simple movements into your routine, even while sitting at your desk?
Here are 8 simple ways to burn more calories throughout your work day.
How many times do you walk to the printer in a day? While you are waiting for a document to print, you could use the time to do some calf raises! You could also do this while you’re waiting at the microwave. Simply step up on your tip toes, squeeze your calves and release, dropping your feet flat on the floor again. Do this consistently for a whole minute, and you’ve burned 5 extra calories!
You can do this one while you are sitting or standing, but probably easier to do when standing. Squeeze your glutes for 5 seconds and release. Do this for ten reps, and you are burning about 4 calories. Do this once each hour of your work day, and you can burn up to 35 extra calories while sitting at your desk!
Leg raises are another great way to burn more calories throughout your day. While sitting in your office chair, raise both legs up to a 90 degree angle with your body, and then slowly drop back down. This is a great one because it uses both your leg muscles and strengthens your core. Do this consistently for a minute, and you could burn up to 5 calories.
Take advantage of your bathroom breaks and do some jumping jacks! If you don’t have enough space in the bathroom, find another space that works well (like the back office that no one is using). Take an extra minute to do some jumping jacks and get that blood flowing. Jumping jacks burn 10-15 calories per minute!
Do you have several floors in your office building? Make an excuse to take a trip to another floor and spend a minute working those glutes on the stairs! Walking up and down the stairs burns 9-10 calories per minute.
Try doing press-ups against the wall or filing cabinet! Press-ups burn 6-7 calories a minute. Find a wall or cabinet where you can be out of people’s walking space, and make it a routine. Every time you pass that wall (or filing cabinet), you have to do 10 press-ups. Your co-workers might think you’re odd, but you’ll be the one toning muscle! Maybe your co-workers will even want to join you!
A super easy muscle group to work at your desk is your abs! Tightening your abs for 60 seconds burns 3-5 calories. This is an exercise you could even do at a staff meeting, and no one would notice!
We all experience tense moments when we just need to take a quick break to clear our heads and get some fresh air. Use those times to your advantage! Take a lap or two around the building, walking briskly. Walking burns 7-9 calories a minute. Even better, grab a co-worker to join you and burn calories together! They will probably thank you for it.
There you have it! This is a simple exercise routine you can spread throughout your work day at the office. Altogether, if you do each of these activities for one minute, you could burn up to 56 extra calories per day, which adds up to 280 extra calories a week! You may not think this is much, but doing the little things over time adds up! You can think of other creative ways to move your body based on your personal work environment and work schedule. Maybe take the long way from the parking garage into the office building, or walk to lunch across the street instead of driving somewhere. Next time you feel stuck at your desk, remember that there IS a way to burn more calories right where you are!