Working a 9-5 office job and sitting down all day can take its toll on our body. Especially when our colleagues have a birthday and bring in cake to celebrate, which is normally followed by a team lunch to celebrate some more...which then might be tailed by a 3pm slump. (That forces us to reach for sugar or caffeine to get us through the rest of the day.)
SO if this tends to happen to you, do you ever really feel motivated to hit the gym after you finish working? Well, maybe sometimes (it depends just how much we’ve eaten right?) Although for the majority of us, especially while it’s winter, the answer is usually no.
It’s cold, we’re tired, excuses, excuses… yah? Plus, our warm homes are just so much more appealing.
Although there are ways you can maintain your health and stay on track when you work in a 9-5 office job! All you need to do is implement some simple lifestyle and work habit changes to help.
The 80/20 rule works wonders too – so if you’re healthy 80 percent of the time you totally have permission to let let loose on delicious food the other 20 percent of the time. Life IS meant to be enjoyed.
Belinda Reynolds, Dietitian with Isowhey says that while you don’t have to be perfect 100% of the time, it’s important to be aware of what we are putting into our bodies, and to choose the best options possible.
"We need to avoid putting foods into our bodies that serve us no nutritional value, because even if they may be satisfying at the time, you can expect to feel slow and sluggish, leaving you tempted to seek out an afternoon sugar-hit to beat the 3pm energy slump."
And how can we avoid that slump? Let's chat through a few simple ways below.
Water bottles are life!
Water really is the key to life. It can help fight off cravings and get you up and moving around the office a little more than you normally would (yaaas, toilet breaks). Actually a lot of the time we reach for a snack we should be reaching for water instead. Are you thirsty or hungry? Hmmmm. If water isn’t your jam, Dietitian Belinda Reynolds says "herbal teas and a warm vegetable soup or broth will also help you consume your recommended daily water intake."
Give yourself an extra twenty minutes in the morning to eat something nourishing. The more breakfast you have in your belly the less likely you’ll want to fit in any of the tempting morning tea. Easy.
Stand (if you can)/ get up to move around as much as possible if not
You know people these days are saying sitting is the new smoking – and if that sentence isn’t enough to scare you then we don’t know what is. Standing desks are becoming more and more popular these days, so if you can it pays to get one installed. It’ll help you burn more calories through the day and will be better for your back. Dr Noel Cauchi, Osteopath at Canberra City Health Network says the human body wasn't designed to be stuck behind a desk all day, "the more movement, or incidental exercise you can do throughout the day, the better it will be for your body in the long run."
Pack your snacks and meals!
If you're prepared and have healthy options on hand it'll help keep you on track. Sugary snacks and treats are everywhere in an office. EVERYWHERE. Sometimes it might feel like there’s no escape. But, if you don’t stray very far from your delicious and nutritious snacks you pack (bravo!) you are less likely to be led astray. Dietitian Belinda Reynolds suggests "when cooking your nightly meals, make larger servings so that you can pack some leftovers and take them into work. Another tip is to do a large cook-up on a Sunday to prepare your office meals for the week. Not only is this a healthy option, you’re also saving money too!"
Plan a holiday
You know the saying ‘all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy,’ right? Well, this tip is for your mental wellbeing rather than your physical (although if you plan a trip somewhere where you might be living in a bikini it might help you stay in shape). Having a break or a holiday to look forward to no matter how much you love your job can help with your stress levels, help you recharge and most importantly, take some much needed time off work! Your brain and body will thank you for it.
Tell us, do you work in an office job? What are some things that you do to keep your health on track?