Four tips for staying lively within the workplace

Five UAB consultants present recommendation on getting began, discovering a gaggle, staying motivated and dealing with climate. Plus: the best way to run a profitable strolling assembly.

Written by: Matt Windsor
Media contact: Brianna Hoge

After months of working remotely throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, many staff now discover themselves again within the workplace. But simply because one may go behind a desk doesn’t imply they should be sedentary.

Five University of Alabama at Birmingham consultants present methods to extend exercise ranges all through the workday.

Start small

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that adults get 150 minutes of bodily exercise every week.

“This can be daunting,” famous Elena Kidd, program supervisor within the UAB Office of Public Health Practice. So, what are some methods to get began?

“Time is really a common barrier that many of our employees face — or more specifically, lack thereof,” stated Riley Thornton, UAB Employee Wellness supervisor. “I generally encourage employees to start small by getting maybe 10 to 15 minutes of activity at a time perhaps a couple of times a day.”

Thornton suggests strolling across the constructing on a pleasant day, strolling to get lunch, or strolling to the automobile as an alternative of taking a bus or shuttle.

As a private coach and coordinator of health at UAB University Recreation, Pedro Magalhaes recommends that time-crunched purchasers deal with that 150-minute advice in manageable chunks.

“I break it down as five days a week, 30 minutes a day — and you don’t get those 30 minutes in straight,” he stated. “If you have a dog, walk your dog for 10 minutes in the morning, 10 minutes in the afternoon and 10 minutes in the evening. That’s 30 minutes right there.”

Gather a crew

Olivia Affuso, Ph.D., affiliate professor within the School of Public Health, says it’s far simpler to have interaction in actions when there may be somebody to go alongside.

“One thing an individual might do is find someone else in their department to go for a quick walk with,” she stated. “Some of my research shows that the networks of individuals we have to draw from can include our co-workers or anyone in our more immediate environment.”

What if there will not be any exercise-minded colleagues? Try out a gaggle health class at a fitness center.

Plan to succeed

Another good thing about “having a group or a community to engage with” is that “you can have that built-in accountability for each other,” Affuso stated.

“It’s amazing when you have a goal, and you have support, how you can start small and build up over time,” she stated. “For instance, I run every day, and I have people who will ask me ‘Did you run today?’ Of course, I don’t want to let them down, and I also don’t want to let myself down.”

Even as a person, “this could look like sending a calendar invitation to yourself for 10 to 15 minutes of activity in between meetings,” Thornton stated. “Whether that’s standing at your desk or taking a lap around your office floor, walking around your building or doing some standing desk stretches. Personally, I have found that, on days when I bring my tennis shoes to the office, I’m more likely to get out for a lunchtime stroll.”

Try a strolling assembly

Kristi Menear, Ph.D., professor within the Department of Human Studies on the UAB School of Education, began main strolling conferences in her division in fall 2019. Menear says her strolling conferences are both one-on-ones or small-group conferences, with a most of 4 individuals, so the group stays collectively and may make eye contact. 

“Where we walk is personal preference each time and depends on factors such as attire, shoes, weather, need for confidentiality and how long the meeting will last,” Menear stated.  

Menear offers the next recommendation for anybody seeking to begin a strolling assembly:

  • Plan forward. “Discuss ‘walking meeting’ when the location of the meeting is being determined. That way, everyone is prepared — bringing their walking shoes, for instance.”
  • Will it work on the go? “Walking meetings work best when the purpose of the meeting is discussion and people will not need to use electronic devices or read paper during the meetings.”
  • Need new concepts? Go for a stroll. “We have found that the movement, change of scenery and level of engagement during the walking meetings all lead to a lot of idea generation. Be prepared to take notes during the meeting, which can be done on a smartphone or small paper notebook.”
  • Give it a attempt. “Try a spontaneous walking meeting when you stop to chat with someone you just ran into. Walk for five minutes together and catch up with each other while you are walking.”
  • Set a objective. Keep the observe going by “setting a goal for yourself to have a minimum number of walking meetings over a given period of time.”

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