Mark's Musings

Mark Atkinson – Content Writer

Keep moving – strategies for being less sedentary

As a writer I know the perils of a sedentary work life. It’s easy to get so deeply involved in a project that you sit literally for hours.

If you work in an office, you may have strategies such as parking further away from your building, stepping out for lunch instead of eating at your desk, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or walking down the corridor to speak to a colleague instead of emailing. I mostly work from home, so here are five strategies I use to keep on the move.

1.    Keep distance

It’s probably not the best use of time, but the only things I have on my desk are my computer and the papers I’m working from. My printer is over the other side of the room. So is the waste paper basket. This means that whenever I need to get something from the printer, throw something away, use a stapler or hole punch, or find something I need to use as a reference, I have to get up. I also tend to collect papers from the printer as I print them.

2.    Keep fluid

I drink a lot of water while I’m working. First it makes me walk to the bathroom on a regular basis. Second I drink out of a small glass so need to get up to refill quite frequently.

3.    Keep moving

It’s commonly thought that regular breaks increase productivity. I step outside whenever it’s a good time to do – once I reached a particular milestone for example. It only takes a five-minute brisk walk to recharge the batteries, refresh the brain and work much more effectively.

4.    Keep mobile

As in many professions, mine involves spending quite a large amount of time on the phone. If I’m not taking notes I tend to pace, a bit like a lion in a cage. I do the same when proofreading. It helps me concentrate.

5.    Keep supple

Like me, you may not be an Olympian. But doing some basic stretches for just five minutes or so, three or four times a day you’ll soon feel the benefits in the longer-term. YouTube is a great place to find some basic stretching or back strengthening exercises.

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This entry was posted on October 1, 2013 by in Work health.
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Mark's Musings

Mark Atkinson - Content Writer

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