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Workout AT WORK!

Canadian researchers found that people who sat more had an increased risk of death (independent of whether or not they exercised), while a 2010 Australian study showed that for every hour spent sitting in front of a TV, the risk of death from heart disease increases 18 percent, even for people who exercised.

The take-home advice: Keep up with your daily workout sessions, but make more of an effort to get moving through the day to  minimize long periods of sitting. Make these tips habit to get more movement in your day:

  • Get a pedometer. You may think you're walking more than you really are. You may shock yourself! Wear a pedometer to get an idea of how active you are outside of the gym.
  • Train efficiently not Longer! Kicking your workout into a higher gear will burn more calories throughout the day and train your most important muscle (your heart) more effectively.
  • Give your desk a makeover. If you have a desk job, see if your company can elevate your workstation so that you can stand. Or sit on a stability ball for part of the day (it requires balance to stay seated, so your muscles will be working to keep you steady.) I do not recommend it all day long.
  • Set reminders. It's easy to get lost in your pile of paperwork for hours. Set timers on your computer or phone to ring that says, "stretch" , "take a walk" "take a break." Or even "Have a healthy snack!"
  • Make the right call!. While it makes sense to sit while typing, you can stand while talking on the phone. So stand up during conference calls and chats with friends. Get up! Get moving!

Here are some exercises you can do at work, and you can share with your fellow employees and the boss too!

Take a ride in your desk Chair! Weeee!!!
This works your core and arms. Sit in your chair with your legs crossed and your feet on the seat. Then place your hands on the armrests, suck in your gut and raise yourself a few inches above the seat, using your belly muscles and hands. Hold for 10 to 20 seconds. Rest for 30 seconds. Repeat five times.

Tricep Desk Dips
Sit on the edge of the desk, with your palms on the edge of the desk on either side of you. Keeping your feet together, bend at the elbows and slide forward off of the desk and dip down a few inches, and then push back up. Dip to where your elbows are bent at 90 degrees. Do this 20 times. For a variation, put your feet on the chair, not a rolling one! EEEK!

Carpal Tunnel Relief (Toooo much typing!!!)
Carpal tunnel syndrome shouldn't catch up to you if you repeat this simple move every day. Stand at your desk, and, arms straight, place your palms on the desk with your fingers pointed toward you. Lower your body slowly until you feel the stretch (you won't have to go far). Be gentle, and don't push too hard. Hold for 15 seconds. Repeat as needed through the day.

Leg Extensions
For lower-body strength: Sit in your chair, extend one leg out straight in front of you and hold for two seconds. Then raise it up as high as you can, and hold it again for two seconds. Repeat with each leg 15 times.

Sitting Spinal Stretch
This enhances both flexibility and muscle strength. Sit tall in your chair, and stretch your arms toward the ceiling. Put your left hand on the desk, grab the back of the chair with your right hand and twist to the right. Hold for 10 seconds. Release and raise your arms toward the ceiling again. Then repeat the twist going the other way. Hold for 10 seconds.

Spinal Reach
A good move for flexibility. Sit tall in your chair and reach your left hand behind your back, between your shoulder blades, palm out. Then reach your right hand up toward the ceiling, bend it down, and try to touch your left hand. If you can reach it, great: Hold for 10 seconds. If not, grab onto your shirt and keep practicing. Switch arms and repeat.

Put your feet up at work! Hamstring Stretch
To ease the hamstrings, lower back and calf muscles, push your chair away from your desk and put a leg up on the desk. The boss won't him/her this blog!(Ladies, be mindful of what you are wearing.....) Flex your foot and lean forward slightly over your leg while keeping your back straight. Hold for 10 seconds. Point your foot, lean and hold for five seconds. Switch legs and repeat

Chair Sit, But DON'T SIT!
These squats work best if you lower your seat as far as it will go. Stand in front of your chair with your feet a hip's width apart. Place your hands on your hips and lower your butt until it's just above the seat. (Tap it if you need to feel secure) If your chair is on wheels place it against the wall. Then sit down as slowly as possible. Do 20 repetitions. To make it harder, reach your hands overhead as if you were holding a beach ball. If you're really feeling steady, try it on one leg.

Desk Push Ups
I suggest these for upper-body strength. Stand three feet or more away from your desk, with your feet together. Place your palms on the edge of the desk a shoulder's width apart. Lower your chest to the edge of the desk, and push back up. Remember to exhale on the way up. Do this 20 times.

Happy Halloween! Stay Safe out there with all those Goblins and CANDY!!!!!!!

Yours in health,

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