Remote work comes with its challenges. One of those challenges is the sedentary nature of this type of lifestyle. It’s easy to find yourself sitting for hours at a time, tied to your desk to meet deadlines and attend important meetings.
Such a routine can lead to feeling fatigued and stressed. Sore muscles may creep in due to your lack of motion. It’s not unexpected to discover you have less energy to get through your days. Plus, prolonged sitting can come with increased health risks.
- Back pain
- Weight gain
- Increased anxiety
- Deep vein thrombosis
- Varicose veins
- Cognitive decline
- High cholesterol
- High blood pressure
- Heart disease
Fortunately, there are ways to counter these risks. Some simple movements throughout your day can help you feel more alert with fewer aches and pains. Your overall health will benefit from adding exercise to your routine.
The good news is you can do many of these at your desk.
This move is to strengthen your leg muscles. It also allows the opportunity to stretch your legs. Sit up straight at the edge of your chair with your legs bent. Your feet should be flat on the floor. Then, just lift your right leg out so that it’s straight in front of you and parallel to the floor. Hold it there for a count of 10 seconds, then return your leg to starting position. Repeat with the left leg, alternating five times.
How often each day do you find yourself with tight shoulder and neck pain? You can relieve these sore muscles by taking time to do a few shoulder raises. To do these, raise your shoulders straight up toward your ears. Hold the position for 10 seconds, then release. You may find doing one shoulder at a time to be even more effective.
Wrist and Forearm Stretch
Typing for long periods at a time can lead to cramped wrists and forearms. There’s an easy way you can stretch them out to get relief. Just stand up while facing your desk. Then, put your palms flat on the desk with your fingertips facing toward your body. Lean forward just enough to feel the stretch and hold for approximately 15 seconds or as long as you’re able.
The chair dip is an exercise that involves your whole body. Choose a steady chair. Sit down and place your hands on the armrests. Move to the edge of your seat, then straighten your arms slowly so that your body is raised off the chair. Hold that position for 10 seconds, then return to seated. Do four more reps.
This is a good exercise to do if you find yourself feeling restless. All you have to do is tap each foot for 30 seconds at a time, then switch. Go for longer periods if you’re able. You’ll get some movement in while working off nervous energy.
If you feel some tension in your back, give this move a try. While seated, put your right arm behind your right hip and twist to the right. Hold it there for 10 seconds. Repeat and shoot for at least three repetitions on each side.
You can even work your abs while sitting at your desk. No need for crunches. To perform ab tensors, just sit up straight. Tense your ab muscles so that your belly button is sucked inward. Hold for a few seconds, then release.
Here’s an exercise that no one will even know you’re doing. It’s just as the name implies. While sitting, squeeze your glute muscles and hold for 10 seconds. Then, relax. Repeat 10 to 15 times.
Water Bottle Weights
Hopefully, you’re staying hydrated throughout your workday. Those water bottles can serve a dual purpose by putting them to work as hand weights. For a nice stretch, try an overhead press. Place a water bottle in each of your hands. Raise your arms to your sides. Your forearms should be parallel to the ground. They will form a reverse-L shape. From that position, exhale and raise your arms straight into the air. Hold for 10 seconds. Return to the L position and repeat. Try 10 to 15 repetitions.
Give these desk exercises a try when you find yourself feeling fatigued throughout your day. Stick with the ones you most enjoy and that you find effective. For best results, be sure to perform your routine regularly.
Be sure to check with your Dr. before performing any new exercise routine.