For most of us who work 9-5 during the week, staying fit and healthy can not only be difficult but often downright inconvenient. I'm writing from personal experience here, I work in an office and sit in front of a computer screen for the majority of my time in the office (and out of it really). I started to notice that I wasn't being very healthy with what I was eating and doing during the working day. So I did some research and decided to share my results with other people so that they can work healthily as well.
Take a Break from Your Screen
Rest your eyes and your back by taking a short break from your computer screen every hour or so. We've all had those days when our eyes feel dry and we have a pounding headache; odds are that this is brought on b the constant strain being put on your eyes by the screen.
If you don't trust your own willpower you can download the free Eye Leo app for your computer, which basically freezes your screen for a few minutes after the selected time period has lapsed.
Walk to, and from, the Station/Office
Trying to fit any meaningful sort of exercise around your busy work day can be extremely difficult and it's easy to see why many people just skip it all together. However, I've come up with a fairly simple and obvious solution, walking.
Instead of driving everywhere (I know some people who drive to the train station!) try getting up that 15 minutes earlier and walk to the station and do the same in the evening. Walking constantly for around half an hour can burn up to 100 calories (that's a thousand a week if you do it twice a day) and it will also save money on petrol and/or travel.
You might think you drink enough water, or that you drink enough when you get in but it is important to ensure that you're consuming enough water throughout your working day. The benefits include better focus which increases your productivity; as well as aiding weight loss and our digestive systems.
Staying hydrated has also been shown to reduce the risk of both colon and bladder cancer by over 40%! For those of you who have concerns about how bad your skin can get (especially with a stressful job) then water also helps there! The best thing about water is that it readily available and cheap, if not free, so you can carry a bottle around with you all day and fill it up with no hassle.
Eat a Filling Lunch to Prevent Snacking
Snacking is the bane of many a working person's life; it is so tempting to buy a big bag of sweets or other unhealthy food to nimble throughout the day. A trick I've found useful to avoid these tempting treats is to eat a really big lunch full of carbs (good carbs) and protein to ensure that I'm not interested in eat a bag of crisps a few hours later.
You might think that eating a big lunch isn't going to do me much good either but studies have shown that eating three square meals a day instead of more smaller meals, actually makes us more satisfied and can aid weight loss. It doesn't help that the majority of snacks are full of salt, fat and sugar which cause obvious and well documented problems.
Keep Your Mind Sharp
Our mental well-being is something that I find is consistently overlooked when people talk about staying healthy. But it is so important to keep the brain sharp and the best way to do this is to treat it as though it were a muscle. What I mean by that is if we want it to get stronger we need to exercise it regularly, and your lunch break seems like the perfect place.
At work that means doing the crossword or Sudoku in the newspaper, whatever floats your boat as long as it's challenging and makes you think. Using our brains regularly is not only for clever people; we all need to do it.