The Benefits of An Active Lifestyle in Today’s Workplace

Health is indeed wealth. We cannot function properly if we feel weak, stressed, and even when we're hungry. Being healthy is a must, and that means we have to take care of our heart and mind as well as our physical aspects.   

Having an active lifestyle is essential in maintaining proper wellness, especially when we tend to be busy with work and other responsibilities. Simple activities such as jogging, running, and any exercise can improve your physical well-being and even your cognitive function and mental health.

Often, people who work tend to overlook their health as they focus more on their jobs and tasks that they need to do. It can be challenging to balance an active lifestyle and a work lifestyle. 

And what happens if you are not active enough? How can you achieve an active lifestyle? Can you work and be active at the same time? What are the benefits of achieving a healthy and active lifestyle even at work?

Read on to find out.


What is an Active Lifestyle?

Having an active lifestyle (note the keyword "ACTIVE") means that you are doing physical activities throughout your day. Any exercise like walking, jogging, or stretching is a part of an active lifestyle.

Doing physical activities is entirely different from other activities such as watching television or reading books or newspapers. These are classified as passive. This type of lifestyle deals with not moving or just sitting throughout the day. And although it isn't wrong to be sedentary, too much of it can cause adverse effects on our health.


The Reality of Being Inactive

Eating healthy food or being on a diet is not enough for your health to improve. Even if you eat healthily, it won't help your body get better if you continue having a sedentary lifestyle. What occurs to your body when you are inactive?

With a weaker body comes the increased risk of having diseases. These include:


#1 Heart Disease

Having an inactive lifestyle can lead to heart disease. This also increases the risk of having other factors relating to heart diseases such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and obesity. 

#2 Osteoporosis

With weaker bones comes a possible chance of having osteoporosis. Being inactive can cause your bones to become fragile and break easily, especially those located on the spine, hip, and wrist.

#3 Depression

Not only is your physical health affected by inactivity, but also your mental health. This is more common for young people. A study discovered that young people who are inactive for most of the day have an increased risk of having depression during the adolescent stage.


Benefits of Having An Active Lifestyle

The benefit of having an active lifestyle is that it has significant effects on your physical health and mental aspects.

#1 Physical Health Benefits

  • Lowers the Risk of Disease
    • Exercising can help strengthen your heart, which is a crucial factor in combating heart-related diseases and even heart attacks. Being active will also keep your blood flow clear and healthy. And with regular exercise can help lower your risk of having:
      • Diabetes
      • Depression
      • Stroke
      • Certain Types of Cancers
      • Arthritis
  • Helps you Sleep Better
    • Consuming your energy through a long period of physical activity is a great way to get a good night's sleep. Whether you struggle with staying asleep or even having insomnia, being physically tired can help you fall asleep quickly. Just remember to be active hours before your bedtime, or you may feel too energized to fall asleep.
  • Makes your Body Physically Stronger
    • As an inactive lifestyle leads to fragile and weak bones, being active has the opposite effects. Having an active lifestyle by exercising can help you become strong due to its ability to improve your muscle and bone strength. And with a more robust physical body, the risk of having injuries lessens. A stronger muscle can also help you do tasks at ease, especially when they involve physical work, such as carrying your groceries or climbing the stairs.

#2 Mental Health Benefits

  • Sharpens your Memory
    • Having a regular active routine can improve your ability to learn new things as well as your memory. This is due to the increased production of cells on your hippocampus where learning and memory are located while being physically active.
  • Reduces Stress
    • An active lifestyle can reduce stress and improve mental and physical life. Being active relieves the tension your body may feel, relieving stress, anger, anxiety, and even mild depression.
  • Improves Self-Confidence
    • Having an active lifestyle can make you feel more confident about yourself. Having a healthy body and reducing stress can make you feel better, boosting your confidence.

How Can You Achieve a Healthy and Active Lifestyle at Work?

It can be a challenge to be active while working at the same time. It is essential to focus on your tasks and important that you keep yourself healthy along the process. It is a big concern about how inactivity can affect our lives. 

This is the case for those in the workforce that most employees spend most of their time sitting for hours. And although there are adverse effects of being inactive, there is always a way to start an active lifestyle in the workplace.

#1 Wear Comfortable Shoes and Clothes

Now, this is not to say that you can wear pyjamas to work. This means that wearing work attire that is comfortable for you can make you more active. If you wear tight pants or skirts, it would be difficult for you to move around. If you wear towering heels or a tight suit, climbing up the stairs can be a challenge for you. 

Find a work outfit that is breathable and shoes that are easier to walk in with.

#2 Use Standing Desks at Work

Sitting for long periods is a part of a sedentary lifestyle, why not switch it up by having standing desks at your workplace? This type of ergonomic furniture makes you stand while working, releasing tension from your lower extremities— such as your hips, legs, and lower back — from sitting for too long. And if you’ve had enough of standing, you can easily adjust the desk’s height so you can work while sitting. This is the same if you want to switch back to working while standing.

Worried about foot fatigue from standing? You can also use anti-fatigue mats when using a standing desk. This can help support and reduce fatigue that can be caused by standing for too long. 

If you want to have a standing desk that costs less but has the same effect, try a sit-to-stand desk converter. This converter is a great alternative to standing desks, especially when you already have an existing desk and wouldn't want to buy a different one.  

#3 Exercise While Working

This can be a stretch (literally!), especially when you need to focus more on your work. There is no need to worry because items can help you exercise even when you're sitting or standing at work. Try investing in treadmills that are fit for your office. Apart from the giant treadmills, you see in gyms, a portable and office-friendly treadmill can be placed below your desk. You can easily exercise your legs and feet while working. Pro tip: using a treadmill at a standing desk is a little easier with certain activities, like reading documents or emails, or taking calls, but more difficult if you need to type. 

#4 Get Moving During Break Time

Even if you are busy with work, it is still crucial for you to break time to remove yourself from work, even just for a bit. Your break times are an excellent opportunity to be active. Instead of sitting at the table during your whole break time, try to have walked to be active. You don't need to have a brisk pace, just a calm and relaxing walk as you spend your remaining break being active yet relaxed at the same time.


Conclusion

Having an active lifestyle is a vital aspect of our lives. It helps your body to be strong and healthy, especially as you age. Being able to dance to the groove of your favourite music, have a walk while grocery shopping or just a walk inside your place is all it takes to live that active life!

If you cannot walk, there are still many activities you can do to achieve an active lifestyle. You can try chair exercises, or even a simple stretch on your place can help relieve tension from your body and feel better. 

Remember that your health is essential. And it would help if you always prioritized this even when you are working. It can be a struggle at first, but some tools and tips can help you live an active lifestyle even when working.

 

If you want to know more about how you can maintain a personal life even when working, check our article that tackles how famous companies encourage their workers to have a work-life balance!