I am no fan of exercise. I LOVE physical activity – hiking, walking, gardening, horseback riding, swimming, etc but actual organized exercise…no, not a fan. I was an active child, with ballet, gymnastics, and softball making up the bulk of my activities (until I found horses, then that was all she wrote) and that translated into an active early adulthood.
That is until I got my first desk job in my early thirties. Oh boy. Not only did my work-related physical activity stop, but so did my after-work activity. I only hiked when we camped (three times a year) and even gardening took a back seat. I sure ate a lot though!
About three years into my new job, I noticed that I had gained a few pounds. Okay, more than a few. Almost all my activity outside work had stopped (besides shopping and the motion your arm makes as it brings food to your mouth) and the only work-related exercise I had was making sure my egg didn’t fall out of the spoon in the relay race at the company picnic.
I started watching what I ate, and started exercising at my desk. It was a bit awkward at first, but people got used to seeing me doing simple stretches and wall push-ups at my desk. I lost weight, and started toning up- all by exercising at my desk and watching what I ate.
I have to admit, I fell off the wagon. When I moved back home to Florida, I was out of work for a bit, and when I started work here at ReStockIt, I was in a state of denial about my weight and fitness level. Spurred on by not only my scale, but also by two standing desks and a core ball chair (co-workers seem to be a lot of motivation!), I have gone back to eating correctly and will be firing up my exercise regimen! It so easy, and anyone can do them.
The first one is just breathing. Sit up straight in your chair, making sure your back and shoulders are not slouching, and breathe in, pulling in your core muscles. Hold for however long is comfortable to you, then exhale, making sure your back and shoulders stay straight. I usually do two-to-three sets of 20.
The next one is leg lifts. Give yourself enough clearance that you don’t hit your legs (or anyone else’s) and sitting straight in your chair (back and shoulder’s straight) raise one leg off the floor and hold for five seconds. I don’t give a height to hold your leg for a reason – you know what your body is capable of, not me. I do each leg two sets of 10.
The last one I do is wall push-ups. Stand facing a wall (preferably a sturdy one- not your cubicle) and lean forward, bracing your palms flat on the wall, fingertips pointing toward the ceiling. Do not lock your elbows or knees. Execute a push-up, pushing away from the wall and moving back towards it, keeping your back straight, and breathing with your core. I usually do two sets of five, working up to two sets of 10.
Now, I’m not a fitness expert, nor a personal trainer. Do these with caution, remember to keep your back straight and don’t lock your joints. If you are completely sedentary like I’ve been, this will help immensely. If you’re active, then these just keep you fluid throughout the day. Always remember to walk as much as possible, meaning take the stairs and park away from the building instead of up close. So what are you waiting for? You can do this!