February is Heart Health Awareness Month, so we all wear red and talk about our hearts, but what are we doing every day to make sure we are keeping it healthy? How many hours each day, week, month do we each spend at our desks without so much as a break to get water? If you’re like us, we can sit at our desks for hours on end. So next time you open a different patient chart, or are waiting for a webinar to start or a webpage to load, here are a few exercises you can do right at your desk to promote heart health.
Just because you’re at the office, that doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate some desk exercises to keep your cardiovascular health on track. Short bouts of exercise between conference calls and checking emails will help improve fitness levels and heart health while burning a few extra calories. In addition, a minimal amount of extra activity can help limit additional weight gain.
Here are five exercises that you can easily incorporate for a healthier and happier workday:
- Stretch – Interlace your fingers and reach up toward the sky, as high as you can – keep your palms facing up towards the ceiling.
- Triceps dip – Find a solid, stable surface such as your desk. Turn away from the surface, put your feet together and place your palms on either side of you on the surface. Bend your arms to dip and raise yourself.
- Under desk leg raise – Place your hands on either side of your chair for stability. Begin to slowly lift and lower your legs to engage your abdomen muscles.
- Squat – Stand in front of your chair with your hands facing out, horizontal from the ground. Slowly and gently move up and down in the sitting position.
- Calf raises – While standing, make sure you have a stable surface if needed for balance, and lift and lower onto your toes.
Each exercise can be performed 10 times for three rounds. That will total about 20 minutes to kick-start your cardio and build strength while at work.