Due to the spread of Covid-19 or coronavirus, remote working is on the rise as it is seen as a way to stop the virus spreading. However, this can prove to be a new challenge for some employees and so advice has been given as to how someone can maintain their fitness and a healthy lifestyle during this time.
Feel Good Contacts, a contact lens retailer has offered eight ways in which an employee can uphold their physical health whilst working at home instead of losing motivation and getting distracted.
Don’t lounge in your PJs
“To help you to get into the mode of working from home, it is important to keep to your regular morning routine. You should get up, shower and have breakfast at your usual time. Don’t be tempted to lounge around all day in your PJs, save that for the weekend!”
Stick to your working routine
“Log on to your work systems at the same time that you would if you were in the office and keep to your work routine, this will mean that you won’t have to work out of hours. Don’t forget to take your morning and afternoon tea breaks as well as your lunch break.”
“Our working world is designed so that we are sitting for eight hours a day. This is the most passive thing you can do which means that you’re not metabolising sugars and fats. Research shows that long periods of sitting can have a detrimental impact on our health and wellbeing and cut years off our lives. The World Health Organisation listed inactivity as the fourth biggest risk factor in global adult mortality.
“When at your desk (or dining table – if that’s where you are working), if it’s possible, stand up and do your work. Standing uses more muscles and burns more calories than sitting and it’s good for your back and posture. If you can’t stand and work, then stand up every 30 minutes to stretch your chest and extend your spine to reverse the hunched position of sitting. Use a towel or find a kitchen or garden broomstick to use for stretching. Holding the towel or broomstick with straight arms at either end, rotate back and forth over your head slowly. Doing this can help to open up your chest muscles and mobilise your back muscles. Stretching is vital for maintaining good posture, especially when working at a desk for several hours a day. It will also help to reduce back and neck pain significantly.”
Set an alarm
“Try and break up multiple chunks of sitting time (set an alarm if you feel you need it) with some movement by taking trips to the kitchen. The general rule is to take a walk at least every half an hour to get a glass of water.”
Drink plenty of water
“People get dehydrated when they sit, plus at this time of year, with the heating still on in our homes, you’ll need the extra H20. In terms of drinking, water is one of the easiest ways to manage body weight and reduce your food consumption. To ensure that you are consuming a sufficient amount of water, keep two bottles of water (1.5- 2 litres) handy. This will leave you with no excuse for not drinking enough. When full, your water bottles will also be a perfect substitute for dumbbells or weights! If you need to drink something warm, then try non-sugary herbal drinks, black coffee or broth.”
What dead time?
“When you’re stuck with some dead time, for example, whilst waiting for the kettle to boil, don’t be embarrassed to do some light exercises like calf raises, squats or lunges.”
Lunch break activity
“During your longer lunch break, try to avoid sitting down on the sofa and switching the TV on. Instead, do some household chores to keep active. Put the music on and grab a can of baked beans for some bicep curls. If this weight is too light then move onto big bottles of water, a bag of rice or even paint tins or bricks from the garden shed. You can also use your bodyweight – try some tricep dips or standing push-ups on a sturdy sofa. To increase your heart rate, run up and down the stairs. Don’t forget a core work out, this can include planks, leg raises and sit-ups. On your first session start with light weights and aim to do three sets of each exercise with 12 reps. As the sessions progress, gradually increase your reps. Remember not to hold your breath when you’re exercising and keep a bottle of water handy.
“If you need some inspiration, then you’ll find some good trainers on Instagram. They will regularly post photos and videos of their workouts. You can also try YouTube where you will find thousands of free fitness videos to work out to. Whatever you feel like doing, from Pilates to body combat to a core workout, you’ll find it on the channel.”
Watch your diet
“Avoid snacking on crisps and biscuits during the day. Food preparation is a great way to control your consumption and saves you money. Chicken, turkey and egg-based lunches are packed with protein and will provide you with the essential building blocks for calorie burning muscles. Fish like tuna and mackerel are cost effective sources of protein that will also increase your energy and the omega-3 will help you to maintain a sharp mind and improve your eyesight. Remember to supplement your protein with vegetables: not only are vegetables much cheaper than meat, but they’re also full of vitamins, minerals and guilt-free calories and perfect to chop up into snack-size pieces to keep you going throughout the day. Fruit, protein shakes, salads and natural fiber bars are also great snacks.”
Research shows that doing exercise can boost our mental and physical health so it’s very important to keep up the exercise routine whilst you’re house bound.