If you spend most of your day in an office setting, here are a few items to keep on hand to maximize your health and well-being.
Whether you work in a small office like I do or for a large corporation, you probably have your own “space.” Here are some recommended items to keep in your office or at your desk to help you on your path to health and wellness.
- Water bottle. Whether you bring your water bottle from home every day (perhaps filled with ice, like mine) or leave one at your desk, drinking water is very important. How much should you drink? Take your weight and divide by two, and that’s how many ounces you should aim for. Divide that number by how many ounces your water bottle holds to determine how many bottles you need to drink per day. Try to space it out over the course of your workday. If you get bored with plain water, try adding lemon, lime, berries, mint or your other favorite natural flavor.
- Healthy snacks. When the munchies hit, and they often do around 2 or 3 pm, make sure you are prepared. Almonds are my go-to snack to leave in my desk. You could also make your own trail mix. I am currently using raw unsalted almonds, dried cranberries and a few dark chocolate chips to create a healthy and delicious trail mix to keep at work. If you chew gum, why not consider adding some sugar-free gum to your stash?
- Resistance bands. When you want to take a break and get some activity in, resistance bands are great to have on hand. They don’t take up a lot of space and can be used in a variety of ways. Some easy standing exercises utilizing resistance bands are bicep curls, squats with overhead press, bent-over rows, triceps kickback and upright rows.
- Stability ball chair. Instead of a regular office chair, why not use a stability ball? While there has been much debate about whether these are useful or not, I find it helps me sit up straighter all day long and engages my core. You may well find sitting on one forces you to maintain your posture, and you can always switch to your regular chair when you need to.
- Walking shoes/socks. If you are female, the shoes you wear to work might not be the best for a quick walk around the building. Leave a pair of shoes (and socks) at your office for when you feel like getting outside for a brief break. Need to discuss something with a coworker? See if they are up to a walking meeting inside of a sitting one. As the weather gets nicer, this is a great way to fit in some activity.
- An alarm. Many of us get so engrossed in our work that we forget to get up and stretch. Set an alarm on a watch, phone or computer for every 30 or 45 minutes, and get up and move for five minutes each time. This can be stretching, resistance band exercises, walking around the building, squats—whatever you can fit in. Taking five minutes every hour of an eight-hour workday winds up being 40 minutes of movement.
A good majority of our week is spent at the office. Find ways to make it help you on your path to health and wellness.
Glenneth Reed a certified Holistic Health Coach and blogs at Let’s Talk and Walk. She is 43 and trying to get healthy through walking, cycling, making healthier decisions and having fun. During the day she is an AdWords Specialist for an Internet marketing company.