Tuesday, December 29, 2009

10 Office Exercises to Combat Stress and Weight Gain by Tisa Silver, Investopedia.com

Hi there!

It's me Svetlana.
This winter holiday season is in full swing and the New Year is approaching fast. We eat a lot, exercise a little, and gain weight. On December 31 we will step on the weight scale, terrified. The numbers are not even funny. It's time for a new year resolution and a season of getting back in shape. Don't forget that winter Carrebean vacation coming! As for me, it will be Hawaii at the end of February. The whole week of Maui sun and beaches. For that I will have to do some hard work. I will follow the "10 lbs weight loss in 2 months" plan I described in the previous blog post, but I also want to feel that when I am at work I don't turn into a couch potato for 8 hours (well, an office chair potato, if you will). So I found this article I want to share with you. It tells you how to exercise at the work place.

10 Office Exercises to Combat Stress and Weight Gain by Tisa Silver, Investopedia.com

"While working a desk job, it can be easy to gain weight. After all, your cubicle holds everything you need to keep you sitting still. If it is hard for you to get away from the desk, here are some fun, easy exercises you can do in your office.

1. Bicep Curls

A water bottle makes an excellent substitute for a dumbbell. Sitting tall with your abs pulled in, hold the water bottle in your right hand and with a curling motion, bring the bottle towards your shoulder. Repeat 15 times and move to the other side.

2. Shadow Boxing

If you have your own office or you can borrow one for a minute or two, channel your inner Rocky Balboa with some shadow boxing. If you have enough space, walk around the make-believe boxing ring. A minute or two of sparring can pack a powerful punch by getting your heart rate up.

3. Throw Your Hands in the Air

You may see people "raising the roof" at sporting events, but doing it at your desk can give you a boost. You can use this move while standing or seated at your desk. For 30 seconds, pump both arms over your head. Take a break and repeat three to five times.

4. Leg Extensions

While seated, begin by holding in your abdominal muscles and sitting tall. Extend your left leg until it is level with your hip. Hold in place for two seconds and lower your leg, being careful not to let your foot simply fall to the floor. Repeat 15 times and then move to the right side.

5. Lift Yourself Up

Place both hands on the arms of your chair and slowly lift your bottom off the chair. Lower yourself back down, but not all the way. Hold yourself just above the seat for a few seconds. Repeat 15 times for a good workout of your shoulders and chest.

6. Release Some Tension

According to WebMD, doing a bit of yoga can help relieve tension. Begin seated and facing forward. Turn your head to the left while turning your torso to the right. Keep this position for a few seconds, then repeat 15 times, alternating sides.

7. A Little Bit of Hang Time

You will need your chair and desk for this exercise which can stretch your back and work your arms. Hanging on to your desk, push your chair back slowly. Stop when you are head is between your arms and you are looking at the floor. Pull yourself back in slowly and repeat 15 times.

8. Twist Away Your Waistline

Begin by sitting at your desk, keeping your knees and hips forward. While holding a water bottle at chest level, twist to the right as far as you can without straining. You should feel your abdominal muscles contract. Twist back to the center. Repeat the entire exercise 10 times.

9. Dips Minus the Chips

While seated, place your hands on your chair and next to your hips. Place your hips in front of chair and lower your body until your elbows are bent at a 90-degree angle. Push yourself back up and repeat 15 times. A stable chair is important, so be extremely careful if your chair has wheels.

10. Kick Butt

Nothing can jump start your day like a swift kick in the rear. Stand with one leg straight and using the other leg, try to bring your heel to your buttocks. Do this exercise 15 times on each leg.

As with any exercise, do not push yourself too far since improper form can lead to injury. By taking just a few minutes each day, you can alleviate stress and make your body happy". I think this is a great article. I will definitely kick ass by the end of February!

For other tips and office exercises see my blog post "Fitness for lazy and frugal: stop your office job from making you FAT!" (look up the October 29, 2009 Archives). Here are some of them:

Thisnking all the time what else I can do to burn more calories while on the job, I cam ups with following solutions:

1. Squeeze glutes repeatedly while driving your car or while sitting at your desk in the office.

2. Suck in the belly for several seconds, then relax and repeat as many times as you want (also in the car or in the office).

3. Get up and stretch every 30 minutes.

4. Stand for phone conversations. Do toe raises while standing.

5. Stroll around the floor several times a day.

6. If you have Wii games in the office lounge as we do, play during your lunch break.

7. Walk to a coworker's desk instead of calling or sending an email.

8. Bring a resistance band to work and pull it for a minute of two several times a day for upper body exercise.

9. Tap your feet on the floor all the time while sitting (make sure you do it quietly enough so your coworkers do not go crazy!).

10. Do breathing exercises several times per day (you don't even need to stop doing what you are doing for that).

Also check out my presentation on Intuitive Nutrition (some slides in Exercise section describe how to add exercise into your daily life, including a desk job). This is the link.

So long!



  1. as a woman, you can also do kegel excercises while at your desk :)

  2. Very true!
    And by doing Kegel exercises while at the desk one can get a dual benefit: burn calories (LOL) and strengthen the pelvic floor!!!


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