Get More Exercise



Technology has had a profound effect on the way we live and work. As a result, we work with computers, and spend most of our day sitting, which has greatly increased the occurrence of related musculoskeletal disorders and other health problems. Most of our office workers are severely out of shape, with just a few receiving good or excellent marks on their physical exams. In addition to 25 to 40 hours a week sitting in a static position to work at a computer, traveling to and from work may involve long journeys either sitting (or more likely standing) on a train or bus with no room for movement. When we get home, it is far easier to sit and eat dinner in front of the TV, spending the rest of the evening sprawled on the sofa, than it is to go out and get some exercise.


When we are tense we breathe shallowly, so we don’t move much as we work, and the accumulated tension and toxins from tense muscles make us even more tense … a vicious cycle every office worker knows. Fortunately, this cycle can be broken by exercise.


Absolutely it is a must for office workers to hit the gym amid a rise in obesity and other health problems. However, an occasional visit to the gym is not sufficient and a gym membership is costly that not every office worker could afford. Mass sports events like a big table tennis tournament will enhance people’s involvement in exercise, but they are not on a regular basis.


Walking is a right idea. A pedometer, or step counter, is a great little tool to help you measure fitness progress. It helps you to see how active you are by counting the number of steps you take and letting you plug in your stride length – doing that will also add up mileage. An active person walks about 10,000 steps per day, as a study suggested. Walking stairs in buildings that are spacious and well ventilated is another easy way to keep fit and strengthen ourselves.


It is great if an office worker is allowed to use some exercise at the workplace to offset stress at work. Shadow Boxing, one "soft" school of Chinese martial arts, readily produces the physical and mental changes workers need for injury prevention and stress reduction, and is easy to learn and use. It is actually applied ergonomics and improves body mechanics by adjusting breathing, posture, and co-ordination, which results in better awareness. People of any age or physical condition can do it safely. It is appropriate for office workers who have been sitting, because you don’t have to "warm up". You do it wearing business clothes, at your desk, and the interruption of work is minimal. 


Chair workout is recommended for people with chronic fatigue syndrome and office workers who sit at a computer all day and can’t make it to the gym. You can try the rapid leg crossing, in which you swing one foot out before crossing the legs. The idea is to keep switching legs, 20 times fast and building up to doing more. Even this simple exercise can get the heart beating faster. Other easy exercises for at the office include rotating your neck, shoulders, arms, even jaw, following a chair-dancing aerobics routine. Just a half hour working out in a chair can leave you feeling like you just had a massage (without having left the office) and rejuvenated, and ready to return to work. It sure beats jogging through the slush in the winter or the intense heat in the summer!


The necessary change required for your fitness will include regular, sufficient exercise and an appropriate diet, and it may take some time to accomplish, but when you lose weight slowly and you adapt to your new lifestyle it is more likely to stay off. Diet without exercise, as well as exercise without diet, won’t work.


The most important thing to note is that the more active you are, the more you decrease your health risk profile. In other words, those levels of activity translate into less risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and other chronic diseases.


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