I’ve got health and fitness on the brain because of a fitness challenge I’m hosting in my own stuff, so I was thinking about ways to get some more fitness into my cubicle-bound day job. Here’s what I’ve got.

  • Rebuild Your Cube – Some offices are cool with cubicle mods, and others get crabby about it. If you’re lucky, try getting the folks in charge of cubicles to make your desk space (or part of it) into a standing configuration. You can always claim back pain and that kind of thing, but standing and fidgeting are a great way to burn more calories. It also prompts you to waste less time. I turned my computer at home into a standing configuration and found it helped me cut down on my superfluous surfing.
  • Set 25 Minute Timers – Sure, accuse me of being a lifehack Pavlov, but I think setting a timer is a great way to get you up and moving on a schedule. Try getting up and walking briskly around the building, outdoors, at least back and forth to the water cooler. We tend to process at peak capabilities for only 25-40 minutes at a stretch. Use this natural rhythm to your advantage, and for your fitness.
  • Stretch Periodically – No, don’t necessarily do full-on YOGA at your desk, but get up, stretch your hands over your head, roll your neck backwards and frontwards, give your eyes a break from the monitor, try bending at the waist and letting your back muscles unfurl a little. Give yourself every chance to remain flexible throughout the course of a day.
  • Walk at Lunch and in the Afternoon – Schedule in your calendar of choice a 20 or 30 minute walk both at lunch time and again somewhere in the afternoon. Sure, you’re doing this on company time, but it’s also going to help your productivity. If you can’t get away for that long, even a few brisk 10 minute walks will give you some health benefits.
  • Refill Your Water Bottle – Good health suggests drinking your bodyweight divided by two in ounces every day (a 150 pound person needs 75 ounces of fluid a day). Drinking water helps with flexibility of your tissue, recovery from exercise, filling your stomach a bit, processing fats, and drinking more water/fluid requires you to visit the bathroom more often, which will burn a fistful more calories.

Those are the top 5 that came to mind for me. What are your best office-side fitness tips? Comment liberally!

– Chris Brogan just started a 12 Week Fitness Challenge for one of his podcast projects. Check it out and sign up.

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