practical tips on how to be more active at work

Every day, millions of Nigerians in the workforce do something injurious to their health: They sit for long hours. Sitting for long hours (sedentary lifestyle) is directly linked to certain cardiovascular diseases, high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol levels, obesity, diabetes, and cancer. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 60 to 85% of the population worldwide does not engage in enough activity. Making physical inactivity the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality.

To achieve good health, health professionals often recommended walking at least 10,000 steps a day. For those who work in sedentary office jobs, however, this can be a daunting task. I am happy to tell you that there are many ways you can increase your physical activity at work. Here are a few ideas to get you started

Walk at least part of the way to work
If you live close to your workplace, walk to work, If you ride the bus, get off at an earlier bus stop than usual and walk the rest of the way, and if you drive, park your car a little far from your office building and walk the rest of the way. These are good ways to fit more activity into your day. You should also take the stairs instead of the elevator.

Stand up more often
Look for reasons to get off your chair. You can stand and walk while you’re on a call. You can also skip emailing your colleague, and instead walk to a colleague’s desk for a face-to-face chat. Not only will it get you moving, it will also help you feel a bit more refreshed.

Track your steps
You can get yourself a smartwatch with activity trackers like the iWatch or Fitbit to find out how many steps you do in a normal day, then set yourself a goal to improve on that number every day. If you can get those, your phone can also work as track your activity (It’s not accurate like the iWatch or Fitbit). Just go to your app store and install a step-tracking app. This would help you keep track of how much you’re moving and keep you reminded of your goals.

Get active at lunchtime
Instead of having lunch while sitting in your workspace, you can take a break and do something active. Take a short walk around your workplace or jog up and down the stairs. This would also help you feel refreshed.

Remember, every physical activity counts. It is better to stand or walk for 5 minutes than not doing anything at all. Do you have other tips to keep you active at work? I’d love to hear them in the comment section!

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