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6 Ways to Move More at Work

You’ve probably read the headlines about how sitting will kill you. In fact, evidence suggests that those who spend longer periods of time sitting had higher levels of fasting blood glucose, which shows that their cells are likely less responsive to insulin. Evidence from another study found that, for people at risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes, the amount of time sitting may be a more important risk factor than the amount of time spent exercising.

Okay, so sitting isn’t great for you, yet the average office worker ends up sitting nearly 6 hours per day. That’s quite a bit of being on your keister! Here are some suggestions for adding movement into your life at the office. Work your way up until you’re on your feet at least a few times an hour.

  1. Choose a parking space that’s far away. Okay, you’ve probably heard this before, but do you do it? Instead of taking the parking spot right in front of the entrance doors, which are right next to the elevator, try parking in the back corner so you can get in some extra steps each and every time you head to or from your car.
  2. Take the stairs. Another one I’m sure you’ve heard before, but, again, are you doing it yet? If you work 10 floors up, try taking the elevator to the 9th floor and walking up the last flight of stairs for a week. The following week, get off on the 8th floor, and so on. Walk down the stairs when you leave the office, too!
  3. Walk instead of sending an email. Are you guilty of texting, instant messaging, or emailing your colleagues when you have a quick question? Even if they’re only down the hallway? Then you’ve found a perfect way to spend less time sitting: walk down the hall and ask them the question! If they’re on another floor, even better. And bonus points for staying on your feet while you chit chat in their office.
  4. Set a reminder to help you take frequent breaks. Your phone is full of helpful ways to get healthy; setting an hourly alarm to remind you to get up is one of them. When the alarm goes off, do whatever fits in at that moment: go for a walk, do some stretching, walk up and down a flight of stairs, whatever.
  5. If there’s a lunchtime fitness class, take advantage. Some companies offer lunch time yoga or other fitness classes, and that’s a great way to get in some movement to break up your long day of sitting. You can also take a walk after you eat lunch or even go shopping, because that means being on your feet.
  6. Think about getting a standing desk. Yes, treadmill desks exist, too, but a standing desk can be much more practical, because most these days are adjustable. In other words, you can sit for an hour, raise up your desk, stand for ten or twenty minutes, then lower it back down to sit again. Also, beware of just jumping into standing all day—it can cause back pain if you overdo it. Work up to standing more and more each day.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.