No time to exercise is one of the most common excuses not to break a sweat. Here’s how to squeeze in your workout at lunchtime – in your cubicle, office building or neighborhood. Sure, we’re all busy, but fitting in some exercise has powerful health and body-slimming benefits. Your lunch break may be the only me-time you get, so turn it into an opportunity to boost your heart rate, fitness level and work productivity for the afternoon.
Climb the stairsAn elevator ride is a missed chance to perk up your rear view. Taking the stairs is almost as good as a step class for working your heart. Keep a pair of running shoes at work so you can slip out of your office heels and really step it up. Think this isn’t a workout? Try 16 flights up, stepping quickly. Even 10 minutes of moderate exercise dials up metabolism for an hour or longer, a recent study in Science Translational Medicine reported. Levels of molecules in calorie burning changed an hour after a 10-minute treadmill test, doubling among the fittest subjects in the study.
Turn your office into a gym
You don’t need weights or other equipment for an exercise break. If you don’t have time to leave your desk or the building to get outside for some fresh air and an arm-pumping stroll, do fitness moves sitting at your desk. You can do leg lifts and ab crunches without getting out of your chair, or stand up to do a few squats. Chair yoga is another idea. Do a modified triangle pose, feet apart, one hand or elbow on your chair seat for support, with the other arm reaching toward the ceiling. It might just entertain your co-workers, too.
Walk your lunch break
Eat a healthy snack or part of your lunch and use the remaining time to walk the neighborhood or nearby trails. A new study in the International Journal of Epidemiology reports that even light activities such as walking can help you live longer. Thirty minutes of moderate activity five days a week reduces your risk of dying early by 19 percent, researchers found.