Whether you work in an office building, from home or out of your favourite café, the fact remains that you’re probably inactive for a huge chunk of your day. Of course, you know this is bad for you. Sitting for long stretches is extremely unhealthy, as is inactivity in general.
Unfortunately, though, the thought of hitting the gym or even doing some other form of exercise after a long day at work isn’t exactly appealing. And, let’s face it, waking up bright and early to get your daily dose of movement in before work isn’t too much further up the fun-o-meter either.
Thankfully, you can now get at least some movement in your largely inactive day by creating your very own active workstation.
But wait. What is an active workstation? And how do you make your own? Read on to find out.
What Is An Active Workstation?
Put simply, an active workstation is a workstation that lets you work and exercise at the same time. It can get as elaborate as you want it to. Some active workstations are fitted with treadmills, bikes or even cross training machines; and these are configured to allow you to move whilst doing your work.
But you don’t have to spend a ton of money on cutting-edge equipment to make an active workstation. In fact, with some out-of-the-box thinking, you could make one for next to nothing.
Things You Will Need
To start with, you’ll need basic office furniture: a desk and a chair. The desk should make it possible to alternate between standing and sitting. To this end, you can either invest in a sit-stand desk, or, if you’re handy, you can make your own.
Of course, the idea is not to substitute standing for sitting, but to alternate between the two throughout the day; which means you’ll also need a place to sit down. A stool should work just fine for this.
However, there are also purpose-built seats you can buy. These make you lean in a position that’s neither sitting nor standing, but sort of in between. The idea is that you can stay comfortable for long stretches, but still get your muscles to do some work. Alternating between standing and sitting isn’t where it stops, though. You’ll want to mix things up with a range of other movements. One often overlooked way to do this is to vary the ground under your feet.
In any given building, chances are the floors are perfectly flat, which doesn’t really do anything for your mobility. Changing this is as simple as buying a river rock mat or even making your own. The idea is to have an uneven surface. This will make it hard to keep your balance, so your muscles will need to work.
You can also give your calves a good stretch, simply by rolling up a towel. Try keeping your heels on the ground whilst rolling the towel with the balls of your feet.
Other Things You Can Do
Alternating between sitting and standing isn’t the only thing you can do to get more active during your workday. There is a variety of exercises that you can do without needing a lot of space or even any equipment.
Make the most of your breaks throughout the day by getting away from your laptop and doing some movements. Run up and down a flight of stairs, or even just jog on the spot. You can also get some weight training done by keeping something heavy close by.
Most importantly, though, don’t forget to actually get moving. If you’re absorbed in a task, this is easier than you might think. Set yourself up for success by setting up reminders throughout your day.
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