Get moving! In many work environments, physical movement isn’t a regular part of the daily routine. Research clearly shows that sitting for long periods of time isn’t healthy for us. In fact, standing up and walking around for just five minutes every hour during the workday could lift your mood, combat lethargy without reducing focus and attention, and even dull hunger pangs. I recommend using this tip repeatedly, at least once a month, as a team. Find a time to take an impromptu exercise and movement break. Call everyone into the conference room, pop in that Jillian Michaels DVD, get moving and start laughing! Invite a chair yoga specialist to come in and lead a session or find videos online that will help your team relax, rejuvenate and renew the body and mind.
Here are several resources: verywellfit.com/yoga-stretches-at-your-desk-3567200 entrepreneur.com/article/279988 more.com/lifestyle/exercise-health/10-yoga-stretches-do-your-desk mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/multimedia/stretching/sls-20076525 Almost every office has the resident fitness expert (your team trainer)—you know who they are! Have them lead the team in a series of stretches to loosen up tense muscles, get oxygen flowing to the brain and just move! The added bonus to this is that many employees will carry over their movements and incorporate them in to their daily routine to multiply the benefits! Of course, depending on your company’s dress code, you may need to give your team the heads-up to make sure they’re wearing proper attire.
Did you know that the benefits of regular physical activity include reduced risk of heart attack, lower blood cholesterol, better sleep, lower blood pressure, stronger bones, and improved quality of life thanks to a happier mood, less stress, and a more positive outlook. As an added bonus, everyone can benefit from physical activity, regardless of their age, shape or size.
For many US workers, finding even 30 minutes each day to do some type of physical activity can be difficult. Between 40 hour (at least) work weeks, long commutes, family demands, and household responsibilities, most people simply don’t have the time or energy to lift weights, go for a run, or twist themselves like a pretzel with yoga. Even the most committed health nuts can struggle with finding the motivation to get their bodies moving from time to time.
One way you as a leader can help promote health and wellness at work is by making a conscious effort to incorporate some type of physical activity into your team’s work week. It doesn’t have to involve running a marathon or completing a triathlon. A voluntary group walk at a nearby park or tossing a football in the parking lot will suffice. With annual premiums for employer-sponsored health insurance rising five percent to an average $19,616 in 2018, it’s imperative we all do our part to keep ourselves and our teams healthy and productive.
This week, I challenge you to research different types of physical activities your team can participate in. It doesn’t have to be complicated or difficult - just get the blood flowing and the heart pumping! Be sure to keep it appropriate to the varying health/activity levels of those on your team.
FUN FACT: The benefits of exercise have been known since antiquity. Dating back to 65 BCE, it was Marcus Cicero, Roman politician and lawyer, who stated: "It is exercise alone that supports the spirits, and keeps the mind in vigor."