Add the office desk to the growing list of obesity contributors. According to a recent study, published in the PLoS ONE journal, a sizable contribution to the nation’s rising obesity rate is the lack of physical activity during the workday.
To find out how to turn the office environment into a calorie-burning zone, we reached out to fitness expert Elisabeth Halfpapp, founder of Exhale Spa and CoreFusion trainer. Here’s what she had to say:
“By nature, humans are hunters and gatherers, thus we are innately programmed to be active and to keep our blood flow moving. When we sit or are inactive, the body becomes lazy, tired, and unaligned. The less you do, the less you want to do. Then you search for quick caffeine or sugary food fixes to find energy, while you are still sitting. Thus, you begin to consume more calories than you put out.”
She continued: “It is very important to move and get up from your desk every 20-30 minutes, not only physically, but mentally, as well. This will give you renewed energy and energy produces energy along with burning calories!”
Don’t have time to get to the gym? Here are some office-appropriate fitness tips to improve overall health and stay energized throughout the day:
- Exercise during the day. If possible, the company you work for should require their associates to exercise during the work day one hour, three times a week.
- Posture at your desk. Ears over shoulders, shoulders over hips, and engage your abdominal to support your back. This will help avoid slouching and bring proper oxygen to the body.
- Get up from your desk. While up, try some leg lifts. Lift your knees one at a time to your chest 50 times while swinging your arms to shoulder height.
- Build up muscle density in your thighs and lower legs. If you have more muscle density in your legs, your metabolic rate will increase thus burning more calories at rest. To do that, try this parallel thigh exercise: stand behind your desk arms length away with your legs parallel, feet and inner thighs together. Raise up on the balls of your feet, bend your knees about a foot, keeping your heels lifted, like an aligned squat. Your tailbone over your heels, knees over toes, ears over shoulders, shoulders over hips, abdomen pulled in. Hold 20 seconds, repeat three times.
Reporting by Kelly Burke/genConnect.com Staff
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- Super-Tough Fitness Workouts (Women’s Health)
- Lose 10 lbs. in 6 Weeks (Women’s Health)
For More on Fitness and Nutrition:
- Memorial Day: Healthy Eating Tips That Won’t Pack on the Pounds
- New Weight-Loss Drug Also Helps Reduce Blood Pressure. Too Good to Be True??
- Another Reason to Exercise: Obesity Boosts Risk for Aggressive Breast Cancer
- Changing What Our Children Eat at School
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