Endless hours hunched over a keyboard, the undeniable appeal of the staff room biscuits and a complete lack of natural light peeking into the cubical may sound like a normal day for those of us with an office job, but just what kind of damage is it doing to our health and what can we do to avoid it while building our personal empires?!
UNHEALTHY = Poor Desk Posture
Sitting for long periods of time is said to be the new smoking! We all know the dangers of smoking but could something we do for hours on end every day be just as dangerous? Research has found that for every hour we are sitting we lose 22 minutes from our expected life span. In contrast, a smoker shortens their life by 11 minutes per cigarette. Other side effects of prolonged sitting and poor desk posture include chronic pain, poor circulation, and an increased chance of injury as we are putting excessive pressure on our spines.
HEALTHY = Switch It Up & Move!!
- Take regular breaks from sitting; go chat to Sarah at reception about her Tinder date (avoid the biscuits on your way!)
- Set the alarm on your phone to remind you to get up and move.
Streeetch; pay particular attention to your neck, shoulders and back. These exercises are great ways to improve blood flow and relax your muscles:
- Move your head from side-to-side – look to the ceiling and then to the floor
- Roll your shoulders backwards and forwards
- Clasp your hands behind your back and stretch your spine
- Depending on how comfortable you are in your office environment, squats are a great way to improve circulation. Tip: don’t try this in your Louboutin’s unless your balance is on point! (Speaking from experience!)
UNHEALTHY = Sarah at Reception’s birthday, Retirement cakes and obligatory biscuits with coffee at morning tea!
Office environments are generally the most sociable around the water cooler… cliché I know! Check out any staff room at the peak hour time of 10:30am and you will see an abundance of Arnott’s Assorted Creams and Tim Tams. Add an obligatory slice of Happy Birthday / Happy Retirement / Happy Breakup cake and you will very quickly notice those empty, sugary calories sneaking up on you.
HEALTHY OPTION = Plan Ahead & Be Prepared
- Always have healthy snacks on hand to stave off those cravings; nuts and bite size pieces of carrot / celery with hummus are great.
- Drink plenty of water – often when we think we are hungry our bodies are just dehydrated.
- If you just can’t say no to a piece of Happy Breakup cake, ask for a small sliver. I guarantee you will still get the sugar hit without the regret!