We all know the drill. A 9 to 5 job, long drives home, soccer practice runs, hours in front of the television while feeling tired and bored and to bed finally. How much do we move our bodies throughout the day? Not much, if you think about it. What happens to our bodies then? Slowly, our bodies lose their muscle content and become sluggish and lethargic. This spells doom in capital letters for most people.
So what can you do, if you aren’t able to find the time to hit the gym or the running track? Don’t worry, there are ways you can beat the flab sitting right where you are. Yes, that’s right. You can actually exercise right there at your desk and still manage to stay in shape. Read on to know more.
Pump your arms and legs up and downEvery hour or so, lift both arms and pump them vigorously for 30 seconds at a time. Rotate your arms as though you’re practicing to throw a ball. Quickly tap your feet on the floor for 30 seconds at a time while moving your ankles. This keeps the blood flowing to your extremities, while burning calories.
Twist your upper bodyWhile holding on to your desk, stand straight, twist your torso completely left, and then right. You’re your desk with both your hands and bend your back as far as it will go. Repeat these moves several times until you feel relaxed and supple.
Stretch your hamstringsLean back in your chair and make sure your lower back is supported. Place your hands under your left knee and bring it up to your chest level. Do this several times and repeat with the other leg.
Practice golf movesJoin your hands together and bring them to your right shoulder. Pretend you’re holding a golf club and you’re about to hit your best shot. Swing your arms out, stretching your elbows and shoulders. Do the same with the other side. Repeat several times.
Do desk crunchesWhile sitting on your chair, keep your hands together and raise them above your head, stretching fully. Keep your body straight in your chair while bending forward from the waist. Rest your joined hands on the desk in front of you and put your head on them. Crunch your abdominal muscles, count up to five, and then relax while breathing out. Do the stretch, crunch and relax moves several times. Take care not to strain your back.
Tighten your glutsYour buttocks tend to get flattened the more you sit. You need to tighten and tone them back into shape. As you work, take a few moments to tighten your buttocks. Hold them in that position for ten seconds and then release. Repeat several times and do this as often as you can. Squeeze your buttocks as tightly as you can for best results.
Expand your chestKeep your hands together and join your fingers with your palms facing each other. Lift your arms above your head and further back, as much as you are able to. Throw your head back and stretch your back while squeezing your shoulder blades together. This opens up your chest and expands your lungs, allowing you to breathe easily, while working out your chest muscles.
Work those absSit straight in your chair and press your feet on the floor. Keep your hands in your lap. Breathe in deeply. As you breathe in, clench your upper and lower abdominal muscles. Hold your breath for as long as you can and breathe out while relaxing your abs. Do this several times during the day to tighten your abs, and as an added benefit, achieving better breath control.
Stretch those legs!Move your chair a few feet away from your desk. While keeping your lower back firmly pressed to the back of your chair, lift your legs off the floor. Spread your legs and stretch them out tightly, with the toes pointing out. You must feel the stretch in your calves, ankles, thighs and buttocks. Keep the stretch for a few seconds and then relax your legs. Do this several times to tone your legs and ensure better circulation.
Rotate your neckPeople who work at their desks all day long tend to hold built up tension in their necks and shoulders and stress causes weight gain. Every now and then, take a break and relax your neck and shoulders. Throw your head back till the back of your head touches your upper back. Then slowly rotate your head in a complete circle, both clockwise and anti-clockwise. Alternate this with raised shoulder clenches to alleviate tension and relax your shoulder muscles. Remember to keep your neck and shoulders relaxed during this exercise.
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