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Are You Deskercising? : Exercise at the Office

Being an attorney can be difficult work. And when it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle,is sometimes it’s not always at the top of your to-do list. However, a recent study in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that prolonged sitting for extended periods of time increased the chances of cardiovascular diseases by 14%, cancer by 13% and diabetes by 91%. These staggering numbers can be terrifying when a majority of American jobs involve sitting for 8 or more hours a day. In addition, a number of attorneys find it hard to find the time to get moving or the energy to go to the gym.

This is where the new trend of “deskercise” comes into play. It doesn’t involve leaving your office and can be done at any point in the day. Here are a couple of exercises you can do at your desk to help improve your health little by little:

Desk + Exercise = Deskercise

Over-head stretching. Start by standing tall and reach both of your hands above your head. Extend your fingers upward for more of a stretch. Take deep breaths as you reach up also for more of a relaxing stretch. Also, the increased oxygen intake helps to awaken your brain and body.

Tricep dips. For more upper body strength, stand with your back to your desk, and place your palms on the edge of the desk. Slowly move a few inches away from the desk. With your feet together, bend your elbows and push yourself back up. Your elbows should bend at a 90 degree angle. Do 10 to 20 reps and then take a break.

Relieve carpal tunnel. Carpal tunnel has been known to plague those who use computers daily. To alleviate the pain, stand at your desk with arms straight, and place the back of your hands on the desk so your fingers are facing toward you. Slowly allow your arms and hands to stretch, and hold of about 15 seconds. Relax, and repeat as needed throughout the day.

Leg lifts. While sitting in your chair, extend one leg straight out as high as you can in front of you and hold it there for a few seconds. Then repeat with the other leg for 10 to 15 reps. This will help build muscle in your quadriceps and calves.

Skip the elevator. Another way to get active is to take the stairs. It’s a great way to get some cardio exercise in your day, and can be done at your own pace.

Get Walking. Instead of emailing your co-workers, walk over to their desk and have a discussion. You gain strength from standing and burn more calories as well compared to sitting. Face to face conversations also improves camaraderie in the workplace, so while you are becoming more active, you are also building a better friendship. This goes to show a little bit of low impact exercise can be beneficial in a number of way.

Conference room lunges. In an empty conference room, stand with your feet together, and step forward into a lunge. Make sure your knee doesn’t over extend past your foot, and should form a 90 degree angle. Step together and repeat with the other leg until you go around the conference table completely. Rest, and repeat the repetition over again.

These are just a few exercise tips you can do in the workplace to get you active. Every little bit counts and slowly incorporating small exercises into your daily routine will become easier and for a habit. In addition, one healthy step will motivate you to make even more healthy choices in the long run.

What other office exercises do you know of or do?

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