Places Count: Your Healthy Office

Posted on October 7, 2014 by

“If it weren’t for the fact that the TV set and the refrigerator are so far apart, some of us wouldn’t get any exercise at all.” ~ Joey Adams

As autumn arrives and the summer heat evaporates, it’s a great time to “reset” your fitness routine. Last month, I talked about the importance of taking care of yourself, and why you should do it now. I also told you about one of my favorite apps, MyFitnessPal.com, which is a great tool for building and executing your good-health plan.

But there’s a lot more to getting healthy than just downloading an app onto your smartphone. There’s eating right, and exercising, and yearly physicals, and – well, all the stuff your mother told you to do. And she was right!

But I’m not your mother, so let’s just stick to the workplace. You probably spend more waking hours in your office than anywhere else. Hopefully, you’ve done your best to create an office that’s efficient and comfortable. You’ve got a desk and a comfortable modern chair. Maybe you have a couch. And while you might move around a little bit while you’re working, you probably spend most of the day sitting. For hours and hours at a time.

But hey, you go to the gym after work, so it’s okay, right?

I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news for you. Recent medical research has identified something called “sitting disease.” Sounds strange, I know, but If you don’t believe me, just Google it. The idea of sitting disease is gimmicky, but it conveys a serious message: people who sit for long periods of time at work are more likely to die of heart disease than those who move around more during the day. And that’s true even for people who exercise.

In other words, it turns out going to the gym isn’t enough. Doesn’t seem quite fair, does it?

So what can you do to work healthier? Here are some ideas to get you moving: How about a standing desk? Yes, there is such a thing, and some people really do work standing up. It’s not for everyone, so you might want to improvise a standing desk with a couple milk crates and a board to see if you like it before you invest in the real thing. The work surface should be just a little below elbow-height. Even if you decide you like having a standing desk, keep a conventional desk and chair around, for those times when you want to sit. You may want to keep the couch, too. You know, just for guests.

If a standing desk doesn’t appeal to you, look for other ways to get moving. Get up and walk around the building once an hour, just to get your blood flowing. Or do some light calisthenics, or go up and down a flight of stairs. Of course, you should get the all-clear from your doctor before you start an exercise program.

How do you know if you’re active enough? According to some experts, you should take 10,000 steps every day. Now, I don’t know about you, but I’d rather be looking for houses than counting steps. If you agree, you might want to get some kind of activity monitor to do the counting for you. These range from very cheap pedometers to sophisticated gadgets like Fitbit that can sync with your computer. Take some time to compare and look at ratings. Once you decide on a device, give yourself some time to learn how to use it – those things can be mystifying if you don’t read the directions.

So as autumn sets in, and the holidays grow nearer, prepare for a healthy holiday season. Get active. Eat right. Go to the dentist. Be happy.

Oh, and call your mother, too, if you can, and thank her for all the good advice.

Don DeRosaDon DeRosa is recognized as one of the nation’s top 21 real estate investors in the New York Times bestseller “The Millionaire Real Estate Investor”. Don, who is a full-time investor, trainer, and mentor, is the first to offer his complete investing system on a mobile platform. Don teaches investors how to Make More and Work Less by being more efficient, productive and competitive, leveraging mobile technology and apps on the iPad, iPhone, Android and other mobile devices.

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