As you know fitness is important to me, but juggling fitness around work is also of key importance. My life is a mix of working away and working from home so it can be especially tricky to make sure I am balancing things well enough that my health & fitness don’t suffer.
This article from Simplyhealth, How to promote fitness at work: Incentives and initiatives, gives some great ideas from a company perspective, but I am a big believer that you need to take responsibility for your health yourself as well. I mean it’s great if you have access to a company gym or Cycle to Work scheme, but you actually have to make sure you use the opportunities available to you as well.
For a while whilst working in Switzerland I was able to make use of the company gym, heading there in my lunch break to squeeze in some low impact cardio to support my running. A change of role and an increase in working from home meant that lunch breaks became a thing of the past and access to the work gym is no longer an option. Now whilst I am away I focus on my running schedule, but when I am working from home I have made sure I have incorporated exercise into my daily routine.
First up I have made myself a standing desk, this highly technical construction of 3 stacker boxes works perfectly for me and it means I spend less time sitting down and more working my muscles. I had a standing desk in the office too, but peer pressure meant I would still spend more of my time sitting than standing.
I also try and squeeze a few exercises in during the day as well, every hour I will stop and do 10 squats and 10 press-ups (currently the cheaty kind on my knees). Of course doing this in your office can be a touch embarrassing, so I work around this by doing the squats when I take a loo break and skip the press-ups (or do them standing up against the wall).
The most important thing I find when working from home though is to make sure I make time for exercise outside work hours. I am generally at my desk from 7am – 5pm but it is all to easy to extend the working day and then just hit the couch. So I make sure I have signed up for evening classes at the gym or have my runs planned out so that whatever the weather or whatever happens in work I down tools and get myself out there.
I am already seeing the benefits of having these plans in place, my legs are toning up from the standing and I think that long term standing will help me get used to the increase in “time on feet” that I will need as I extend the distance of my races.
How do you keep fit at work? Are you a run commuter or do you get up to something more creative?