Do you sit at your desk looking out the window and longing to be outside enjoying the sunshine and longer daylight hours? Well you’re probably not alone as many of us feel the urge to stretch our legs throughout the day.
With the busy grind of day to day life, sometimes we’re not able to walk nearly as much as we should be. But with walking being the most simple (and cheapest) exercise on offer for most of us, and with research showing sunlight boosts your mood and energy levels, what more motivation could you need for getting outside and into a stride?
Here are some top tips on building walking into your day to day routine, giving you the opportunity to really stretch your legs and improve your health.
Take the stairs
It’s simple. If your office is spread across multiple floors, say no to the lift and opt for the stairs instead. It’s a really good way of getting those steps in (literally) and will actually work your body a whole lot harder than a simple walk.
E-mail no more
Need to speak to a colleague but they’re sat over the other side of the office? Discard that email you might have started writing them and walk over to speak to them face to face. Not only is it more personal, but you’ll be able to stretch your legs on the way.
Changing up your usual daily routine to fit in more walking can seem like a major hassle at first but you’ll feel the benefits in no time at all. If you live within three miles of your work, it is entirely feasible that you could swap public transport, or the car, for a bit of time putting those legs to good use. You’ll be amazed at how much ground you can cover in no time at all. In many cases it may be quicker than driving when you factor in traffic congestion.
Increasing how much you’re walking is brilliant, but unless you’re monitoring how much you’re doing every day and watching the steps build your progress will be difficult to track. Set yourself daily challenges, building on the amount of steps by 200 or so each week and evaluate how well you’re doing. For reference, the average recommended daily steps for an adult is 8,000-10,000. Measure how far you’re walking with a pedometer or Fit Bit. You can do it!
Take a break
Incorporate a short walk into your hourly lunch break. Go and grab a bite to eat, run errands, or simply get some fresh air. You’ll come back to your desk feeling refreshed and ready to face the afternoon.
Andy Wilkins is CEO of Plutus Health
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