Working from home can help you create the lifestyle that you are comfortable with, and works best for you or your family, but it is also filled with challenges. When you are too lax with your schedule, or easily give in to temptations around the house– especially unhealthy ones– working from home gets hard. It is possible to stay fit and healthy while working from home, and it doesn’t take a lot of work once you get over those initial hurdles and learn a few good habits. I have been working from home for years, and love it and manage to get my fitness in daily. Here are some tips for staying fit and healthy while working from home.
Use these tips to help you maintain your time and schedule better in order to include healthy bursts of activity into your day.
Create Dedicated Office Space
One of the biggest time wasters for work at home professionals is the time they waste creating a space to work each day. For most it comes down to comfort, after all, you are working from the home. Instead of choosing the couch or comfy chair, create a dedicated office space that forces you to tune out distractions and remove yourself from most situations that don’t really require your attention. Doing this will increase your productivity and allow you to carve out those minutes that you say you don’t have for exercise.
Start With Your Seat
Like having office space, think about where and what you are going to sit in. The right chair promotes healthy posture, correct breathing and even exercise. Even better, a standing desk gets you up and improves circulation, which is better for your overall health. Keep an exercise ball in your office and swap it out for your chair when you feel like you need to flex different muscles.
Break Up Your Day
Some of us become so focused on our work that we don’t get distracted enough. Break up your day into hourly increments so that you are reminded to stop and move with some regularity. It is never good to sit for hours on end, so just taking ten minutes at the end of each hour for stretching, or to get a quick chore in ensures that you are always moving, but still working. I like to work a bit, then get up and do dishes, or vacuum, or take the dogs outside. I will even throw in laundry or fold laundry to break up the sitting time.
Use Your Stairs
If there are stairs in your home, use them rather than avoid them. Try to keep your office as sparse, in the way of comforts, as can be so that you are forced to get up to go grab things as you need them. Avoid keeping a small fridge or large bottles of water in your office, and instead make as many trips up and down your stairs to grab healthy snacks and water throughout the day. Set a goal at the start of each day, for trips to make up and down your stairs and try to hit that number in each workday. For me, I have a bathroom on my main floor where I work, and also one upstairs. I use the one upstairs, just to groove my body a bit more.
Give Yourself Breaks and Set Limits
One thing a lot of work at home types do is to skip breaks, lunches and overbook themselves, in order to fit it all in. Keeping a regular eating schedule is healthy and important, preventing chronic diseases and keeping your body from turning the food you finally do eat straight into fat. A flexible schedule is great, but you do have to set limits and still keep those breaks for yourself. I try to never eat lunch at my desk. I give myself time to prepare my food, and then I sit and eat either outside or at the table while I read a magazine or something for down time.
Make Yourself Accountable
For anyone that finds himself sliding, accountability is the best motivator. Find other work from home professionals in your area to work towards a healthy home/work lifestyle with. This gives you a buddy to check in with from time to time, and can even lead to impromptu out of the home workout sessions. The more people that know about your healthy lifestyle goals, the easier it gets to make these new changes part of your normal routine.