Desk Work Isn’t A Death Sentance

The leading cause of poor health isn’t obesity, it’s inactivity. That’s right. It’s better to be obese and active than skinny but inactive.

But most of us are in school or work an office job, or both. As hard as we may try to stay fit, the fact is the majority of our time is spent sitting. I don’t want to get too morbid here. So let’s not talk about how it will kill us. Let’s talk about how it will prevent us from having a nice butt. I’m not sure which is worse.

Although we don’t always have control over our life’s circumstances (we all need to go to school and work) we can still find some control to stay active. At the start of the pandemic I lost my office/desk job. But I used the setback as an opportunity to change careers into one where I am on my feet, active and moving around most of the day. At the end of each shift I feel so much better. I am also taking classes. Because of the pandemic, they are online. Not only do I love this because I am an introvert who prefers to stay in my house anyway, but also because I can workout while listening to lecture videos. Throughout college sitting through lecture was torture, but now I stand at my desk stretching, squatting, and doing sit ups while the lecture plays. I don’t think I could do this in an in person lecture.

It’s not impossible to get a little active if you are back to work or in person class though. Here are a few things I have done to keep from going stir crazy at my desk.

If you’re in an office of your own at work, or have a desk with privacy, you can try some of these desk workouts without people staring at you.

  1. Sitting leg raises
  2. Chair squats
  3. Tricep dips
  4. Desk incline push ups

If you are a student in class and can’t perform these movements (without being stared at or possible kicked out) try these.

  1. Squeeze your glutes – sure this sounds stupid, but you can use this time to build a better mind-muscle connection, and you can also get some blood flow to the largest muscle in the body
  2. Squeeze your abs – you can maybe even get away with those “vacuum” ab exercises
  3. Sitting calf raises
  4. Shoulder pull backs – take this time to build that mind-muscle connection with your rhomboids, especially if you have bad posture
  5. General fidgeting – studies show fidgeters burn more calories, so as a last resort don’t feel bad fidgeting around, shaking your leg, twirling your thumbs, moving side to side. It’s still better than complete inactivity.

As I said, some aspects of our lives our out of our control. But for the aspects that are in our control, we need to do what we can to stay active and make choices (as important as career choices to as trivial as whether or not to take the stairs) that support a healthy life.

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