Finding your groove as you work from home takes time. It took me a while to adjust my daily habits and balance my day. One of the earliest challenges that I faced was figuring out how to balance my physical health needs with my workload. How do I stay focused and healthy now that I have more freedom? Although I still dedicate 45 minutes to an hour for exercise at the gym or park, I realized that it was just as important to continue to move throughout the rest of the day. A little bit of exercise throughout the workday, taking momentary breaks, and embracing the freedom of working at home can make you happier, healthier, and more productive. Use these 7 tips for staying productive and healthy while working from home.
Benefits Of Workday Exercise
Exercising throughout the week should be second nature. In the past, when you drove or took transportation to work, you found ways to squeeze in some gym time. Now that you’re working at home, the comfort might slowly lead to feelings of complacency or putting things off. Going to the gym is great to get you out of the house and also helps you be more social. With that being said, you don’t need to spend an hour at a gym or running unless you’re training. Every push, pull, and lift can be done in the comfort of your own home with basic equipment or no equipment at all! Resistance bands and a yoga mat are all you need to stay healthy at home, but you can also add dumbbells to give you a wider range of options.
Another thing I’ve realized is that staying active is about more than burning calories. It’s also a fantastic way to keep your mind and body energized all day long, by sending oxygen and blood to your brain to keep you creative, alert, and focused. Increased oxygen to the brain is proven to increase cognitive function. The result is more creative and accurate work!
Staying Productive And Healthy While Working From Home
These 7 tips will provide all of the guidance you need to transform your health while maximizing your work from home lifestyle.
1. Start Your Morning Strong
There’s no better way to start your day off than with an exercise routine. A quick workout wakes your body up and allows you to easily transition into your workflow.
To start, try our top-rated 7-Day Morning Workout Challenge. It features ten body weight exercises that can easily be arranged to make each workout new and challenging. After you’ve worked hard, try any of these delicious 15 Quick and Easy Breakfast Recipes to help you refuel.
2. Spread Your Work Out
If you have multiple projects you need to work on, alternating between them can be a great way to add a little relief to your brain and avoid stress. Staying focused on one subject for too long decreases focus and results in a creative block. Do one project for 50-55 minutes, take a quick 5-10 minute break, grab any of these 32 Clean Eating Low-Calorie Snacks, and transition into your next assignment.
Sometimes stepping away from a project and focusing on something less complicated is the best way to find new inspiration in getting the job done. I like to alternate between writing (which takes a lot of brainpower) and “data-entry” type work where I can listen to music and zone out throughout. Try to plan your workload ahead of time so you can stay organized and focused.
3. The Sit-Down Stand-Up Method
Between sitting for prolonged periods being bad for you and standing for an extended period being uncomfortable, a compromise between the two is a perfect way to promote health. Working from home means you can sit and stand whenever you want.
I like to switch up sitting and standing. At times, I’ll sit for 30 minutes, then stand up for about 10-15 minutes to let blood flow unrestricted to my lower body. While standing, I do calf raises, alternate lifting my heels and ball of my feet, and rotate my ankles around to keep my joints loose. Adding a yoga mat or any soft surface will also make standing less stressful on your feet and joints. Better yet, why not make your own DIY Treadmill Desk so you can burn calories while you work.
4. Relax your Hand
If you don’t have to use your hands, get them away from your keyboard and mouse. Your shoulders and arms tend to get locked in one position for too long when you’re at your desk. This can lead to excess stress on your spine, muscles and joints. If your work requires reading, shake them out and let the blood flow to help them relax. If you have a touchscreen, use it. This limits the effects of carpal tunnel and hand cramps.
5. Stay Hydrated
Hydration is key to living a healthy life. Working from home gives you more freedom to stay hydrated and make better choices on what you drink.
I aim for a gallon of water a day to help me stay focused while also curbing unwanted eating. I accomplish this by having a gallon pitcher and mug at my desk. Water can become boring on its own over time, so try any of these 7 Ways To Make Your Water Taste A Whole Lot Better. A little flavor goes a long way and makes drinking water more exciting. Also, drinking through a straw makes it easier to consume more water!
6. Take a Break
The Italians have this phrase, dolce far niente — the joy of doing nothing. Embrace it! You work hard, but you don’t relax enough. You’re your own boss at home, so reward yourself with a nice, daily break. Prepare any of these delicious 21 Clean Lunches in Under 10 Minutes, then hop on your couch or a cozy chair and kick back. Maybe even take a cat nap!
Let your brain and body relax, recuperate, and unwind. Working non-stop adds stress to your body. Working from home means you have more control over your work life. Own it!
7. Get Up And Move
A midday workout is great for boosting your energy and helping you stay upbeat and positive as you get through the second half of your day. You’re home. No one’s watching. Get up and move!
Remember, workouts don’t have to take up a ton of your time! Designate around 20 minutes each workday to fun and balanced routines. Try any of these 15 Workouts in 15 Minutes or Fewer to give you the best fat-burning and muscle toning results.
Working from home is an amazing opportunity to reshape, refocus, and take ownership of your daily life. You have more freedom and choice in your decisions. Choose to stay healthy, active, alert, and productive throughout your workday. You deserve it.
This post originally appeared on Galt’s Conditioning.