The Job of a Full-Time Sitter
Create Healthy Office Habits
By Amy Lorraine Lohbihler
Making the transition from student to a 9-5’er happened within the blink of an eye for me.
I never realized or fully appreciated the leisure that comes with being a student. I could work out when I wanted, cook fresh meals when I needed and had an endless supply of energy.
Basically, I was living the dream and didn’t even know it.
But life goes on, and dreams change. My dreams now are focused on moving further with my career and starting my own business.
But this doesn’t mean I’m going to stop being healthy. It means I’m going to have to adapt to my new conditions. That’s just how life works; it changes. And I should be able to, too.
I not only had to adapt my routines, meal prep and workouts, but also to being a ‘full-time sitter’.
Being a ’full-time sitter’ is a harder job than it seems. I sit in front of a computer for work, as most people now do. Sitting all day AND being inside an office can take a toll on our bodies and minds. I love my job and am very lucky to work in a beautiful office, with lots of windows and good vibes, but I have still had to adapt in order to keep the health of my mental and physical body in-check.
Here are some of my current healthy office habits:
1. Walking to work. This one doesn’t start in the office, but it gives me a clear mindset for when I get there. I have to wake up earlier, but a little fresh air in the morning does me good. I know that many people do not have this option but even making little walking changes such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or parking a little further away can make a big difference. (Challenge: try to drink a whole water bottle before you get to work!)
2. Flavoured Carbonated Water. With endless coffee, pop and juice in the kitchen, it’s easy to grab something sugary or become dehydrated (especially if you need coffee to wake you up). Flavoured Carbonated water is my best friend. (Pro tip: throw in a couple ice cubes and a straw and you’ll enjoy it that much more. For some reason, I drink more when it’s through a straw.)
3. Positive Affirmations. In my first hour at work, I blast positive affirmations in my headphones. I know some positions don’t allow for listening to music, so in that case, you can incorporate positive affirmations as your desktop image or something on your desk (I keep a ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’ book I will refer to).
4. Going to the bathroom every hour. This is easy with the amount of bubbly water I drink, but even if you don’t have to go, it gets you up. (Pro tip: when in front of the mirror, do a quick power stance with your arms open! You’ll go back feeling ready for anything!)
5. Stretching every hour. I call it my seventh inning stretch to be funny. Do a little twist, stretch those legs and arms and get a couple deep breaths in to reset.
6. Planning meals for the next day. At work, we have a full library of cereal, cosco-sized boxes of snacks and a whole candy table, so usually that’s all I can think about. Instead of going crazy trying to find the willpower to say no, I plan the treat I want into my meal prep for the day. That way I have something to look forward to and can join in on having treats with everyone else.
7. Cleaning up before going home. I never like to leave any dishes or a mess with my notebooks, or even my computer desktop messy. If you want to start the day with a good head space, end it with a good one too.
8. Reflecting. I write down 3 awesome things that happened at work each day. There is always at least 3. (Challenge: Don’t stop at 3! Write down all the awesome things, even little successes).
I hope sharing my healthy office habits with you will help you tackle your day feeling good and in a positive head space.