5 Ways to Work Out at Work
We all know that it's important to incorporate some exercise into your daily routine. Here are five ways to incorporate exercise into your work day.
We all know that regular exercise promotes good health and gives you the energy you need to keep working throughout the day. Not only will you burn calories and control your weight, but you’ll also build your stamina and improve your mood while helping build your self-esteem.
Althought it is important to incorporate some exercise into your daily routine, sometimes that's easier said than done. This is why we've put together some innovative ways to exercise while you’re at work.
1. Park at the closest public parking lot and walk to work.
Okay, so maybe I lied. You won’t actually be able to do all of these exercises while you’re at work, but you can do them during the course of your regular work day. As the weather gets warmer, some spring days will be nice and sunny enough that you’ll wish you could grab the essentials and set up shop outside your traditional office, but that’s a little unrealistic in the health field. Instead, opt for parking your car as far as possible from your building so that you can enjoy the warm weather before and after work. Not only will you be able to breathe in some fresh air outside of the office, but walking has many physical advantages, such as strengthening your bones and muscles and improving your balance and coordination.
2. Bike to work if you live close enough.
If you are lucky enough to live close to your office, you can also take advantage of biking to work. Aside from saving gas money and wear and tear on your car, you’ll build your cardiovascular fitness without hurting your joints, since biking is a low-impact activity. In addition, if you live in a major city, you may have the option of renting a bike, such as through the Citi Bike program in New York City.
3. Make it a priority at lunch to hit the gym.
Chances are there’s at least one gym right around the corner from where you work. Whether it’s a big fitness chain, or the local YMCA, you can try to get in a quick workout during your lunch hour out at least every other work day. Or, since most veterinarians don't get time for a snack, let alone a full lunch break, you can try to hit the gym on your way in to work, or on your way home. Be sure to pack a gym bag the night before with the essentials you'll need (workout clothes, sneakers, extra socks, a water bottle and a gym lock.)
In addition, it’s always important to eat and drink the right foods before during and after any workout, to achieve the best results.
Before any workout, stay hydrated by drinking enough water. Keep your body fueled up on easily digestible healthy carbohydrates so that you will have enough energy to optimize your workout and burn calories. Try to avoid saturated fats and proteins before any workout, as they take longer to digest and reduce the amount of oxygen delivered to your muscles.
Some healthy food options include:
- Whole-grain cereals with low fat or skim milk
- Whole-wheat toast
- Low fat or fat free yogurt
- Whole grain pasta
- Brown rice
- Fruits and vegetables
After any workout, be sure to rehydrate as most of the water you drank before and during your workout probably escaped your body through sweat. In the first 20 minutes to one hour after your workout, try to restore the energy your body burned up during the exercise by eating healthy carbohydrates. Finally, a post-workout protein-rich meal or shake are recommended to help grow and repair muscles. 4. Play with or walk the dogs, cats, rabbits, lizards…
As a veterinarian, you already know that it is widely acknowledged that playing with pets helps improve one’s mood and reduce the risk of heart disease. You also know that having a pet can induce physical activity and so why not take advantage of it. As you know, dogs, in particular, need to be walked anywhere from two to three times a day.
5. Do lunges or squats when you walk.
Whether you’re waiting for your next patient or you’re walking from one patient room to another, doing lunges or squats will definitely be beneficial (but, be sure to enlist the rest of your staff in on this practice, lest you risk losing them to giggle fits.) Both lunges and squats are muscle strengthening activities that strengthen and tone your lower body. These exercises target your glutes, hamstrings, quads and core while increasing your stamina and burning calories. Try this week-long lunge and squat challenge that’s easily executable throughout the course of your work day.
Whether you choose to try and incorporate one of these suggestions into your work day, or another form of exercise of your choosing, the message is clear: It is important to incorporate physical activity into your day any way that you can to stay happy and healthy for yourself and your patients!