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Working from home became a reality for millions of people across the UK, and the world, during the lockdown. An estimated 26% of those workers will remain working from home when the pandemic is over. Although productivity can increase, working from home also increases the risk of musculoskeletal problems due to lack of exercise.
As you can imagine, having a home office can often have you glued to your seat for hours, often making you neglect any kind of activity. If you’ve found yourself in this situation and are struggling to get your steps in at home or find the motivation to get active, keep reading!
Getting out of your seat for 5 minutes an hour will not only help your blood circulation, but will also add steps to that counter. It has also been scientifically proven that those 5 minutes can reduce a build-up of plague in your arteries, also known as atherosclerosis. Use this opportunity to complete a quick chore. Go round the house and collect your washing, make the bed, or even tidy up a room quickly! No matter what you do, getting those legs moving for a couple of minutes an hour will make a difference!
Whether you like an English Breakfast or an Earl Grey, those minutes between the kettle boiling and the tea brewing, you’ve got plenty of time to do a couple of laps of the living room, run a couple of sets of stairs or sweat out some star jumps. You can even make a small workout routine to put on the fridge that lasts as long as it takes to make your hot drink!
Walking round the house whilst on the phone can actually help improve your concentration, let alone help you reach your step goal. Moving around whilst on a phone call has also been connected with higher rates of creativity! So, next time your boss gives you a call, try getting away from your desk and try pacing up and down the corridor!
If you really want to push yourself at home, there’s plenty of home workout equipment available out there. Depending on your budget and planned usage, you could opt for anything from portable steppers, to treadmills. Some of these options can even sit under your desk to keep you moving whilst you’re seated!
The benefits of having home workout equipment include having total flexibility to when you want to walk (no waiting for that heavy rain to move on!), after a few months of usage they become cheaper than a gym membership and they’re a great way to help you de-stress after a long day.
Working out alone can be daunting, and often hard to find the motivation. You don’t have to do it alone! Why not follow along to a home workout video online on your lunch break? Whether you want to dedicate 5 minutes or half an hour of your lunch break, there are millions of videos online that can not only increase your steps, but give your full body workout.
It’s so important for your mental health to get yourself out of the house, especially when you’re spending countless hours inside. Not only will your legs need the stretch, your brain will also need the fresh air. Try walking, running or cycling to the shop instead of driving or take a walk round the block or to the park. If you’re hesitant to get out by yourself, bring your partner or meet up with some friends!
Another brilliant, and fun, way to add to that step count is to play with your pet! If you don’t have one, now might be the time to reconsider. Playing with them will not only will it energize you, it will stimulate your pet (that can actually help improve their behaviour!).