Getting a 9-5 job can be a big stabilizing factor in your life. There’s security and structure built in, and that’s attractive. However, you realize a lot of your life goes towards your work hours, and you might have trouble finding time to do what you want outside of work. One of the hardest things to maintain is a physically active lifestyle around a 9-5 job. Oftentimes, it’s the last thing you want to do after work.
Many modern tools, such as a Lifespan standing desk treadmill, allow you to get your workout in while you’re at work or working from home. But this isn’t the only solution. If your job is physically demanding already, or you can’t stay in one place while you work, this might not be the most ideal option. But if you have flexibility in the office or can work from home, it can be life changing.
In this blog, we’ll break down some ways to stay active around your traditional 9-5 job. Keep in mind: it might require some significant change in your daily routine, but that’s the point of improving your physical fitness, right? You may be surprised to find it’s not as big of a change as you might think, and the results will be your reward. Let’s get started.
- Become a morning workout person
Admittedly, this is a pretty significant change. A 9-5 job already demands an early rise. If you want to start running or hitting the gym before you have to report for work, you’ll likely have to wake up much earlier and go to sleep earlier as well.
But rising with the sun to start the day on a positive note makes you feel great. It gets you in a mindset that lends itself to your work. The day has already begun, so you don’t need to shift into work mode first thing in the morning. Studies have shown working out in the morning is a great way to improve your productivity, sleep cycle, metabolism, and more.
- Work out directly after work
This is a great option for those that work in an office or otherwise sedimentary environment throughout the day. Going to the gym after clocking out is a great way to unwind after the demands of the workday. If you hold yourself to going to the gym before you go home, you’ll be more relaxed and in a better mood when you finally do get home.
This can be difficult to stick to if you aren’t disciplined. It may be easier to wake up and hit the gym or go on a run immediately, but if you aren’t a morning person, you may need to shift to an after-work workout routine.
- Make your weekends more active
You may not have the energy, bandwidth, or capacity to work out around your work schedule. In this model, you could compensate by prioritizing your weekends as times to get out and get active. If you live in a place that’s ideal for hiking or outdoor activities, like Colorado, it can be an easy thing to add to the weekly schedule. But no matter where you live, you can run, play basketball, get a bike, or even walk on the treadmill while you watch your favorite sports team or reality TV show.
You can dedicate one weekend to cardio, then the next to lifting, or vice versa. The important thing is holding yourself to your workout commitments. The weekends allow you to switch up your workouts and become more physically active in a versatile way.
- Work out while you’re working
Again, this model only works if you’re able to use workout equipment while you’re working. If your office allows you to modify your desk or work area, you could take frequent breaks to do physical exercises at your desk. Treadmill desks and other similar pieces of equipment allow you to walk, run, or jog while working on your laptop or taking calls.
If you can work from home, your workout station becomes much more versatile. A standing desk, a treadmill desk, a traditional treadmill, or even an exercise ball as a chair can have massive effects on your health. It may help you to be more productive or keep your energy up during the day. If you can’t work out at the same time as working, you can take walks during calls, or breaks to crank out some exercises every 30 minutes or so.
- Treat your workouts like your work
Just like you would never miss a shift or work meeting, hold yourself to the same standard when it comes to exercising and staying active. If you see your workout schedule as an extension of your job, you’re more likely to stick with it every day. This may mean taking breaks from technology throughout the day in an effort to eliminate distractions. It may mean setting short- and long-term goals for your fitness and meeting those deadlines with strict discipline.
Reward yourself as well as your own boss. Make sure you provide incentives for yourself to stay active and hold yourself accountable. It makes it that much more rewarding when you attain your goals and settle into a new routine. Sure, give yourself a few personal days when you’re really not feeling it. But if you treat your fitness like your career, you’ll see stronger results.
Improving your lifestyle to be more physically active is one of the toughest challenges you can take on, especially if you aren’t very active to begin with. It can be tough to get up extra early for a workout knowing you have a long day in the office ahead of you. Plus, after a tough day at work, going to the gym directly after getting off can feel like the last thing you want to do.
That’s why you should simply give it a try; a real try. See if the benefits you feel from starting the day in a productive way or holding yourself to your goals is worth it. Try and make your workouts more fun. Find a workout buddy to tackle shared goals with. And get creative with your workouts and exercise routine.
Don’t let the 9-5 win and keep you from your fitness goals or achieving the active lifestyle you want. But in reality, the best time to work out is when you can find the time.