Staying healthy and having a demanding full time job can be a tough balancing act. After work, all you really want to do is just kick back and relax. But if you keep it simple, and use your workplace as a healthy setting, you can maintain a healthy body.
Here are a few tips to help you manage your health when working long hours:
- Stand up at your desk. Sitting, especially for over 10 hours a day, has negative health implications ranging from bad posture to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.
- Avoid heavy meals during your work day. If you are working long hours, you need energy to fuel your day. Instead of 3 big meals during the day, aim to have small meals throughout the day for a steady supply of energy. Bonus - this might also leave part of your lunch break free for exercise!
- Stay hydrated. It's easy to get caught up in your work but drinking water is really important. In fact, the body can go longer without food than it can without water - that's how important water is to the body.
- Take a stretch break. It can help your posture and allow you to breathe better! Expanding your lung capacity means more oxygen-rich blood will get to your brain, keeping you alert and productive. This is essential when you are working long hours.
- Find time for interval training. Interval training is an efficient way to burn kilojoules and it's great if you are short on time. If you have a 30 minute lunch break and you want to work out, you will have plenty of time to get it done.
- Be positive. Mental strain can take a heavier toll than physical exhaustion. Splash water on your face or take a shower - studies have found that 'water therapies' such as this can help to increase your energy levels; vent your feelings - discussing negative feelings can ease them far better than keeping them bottled up; listen to music - it is one of the most effective ways to change a bad mood, decrease tension and increase energy; let grudges go - nursing a grudge can prompt your mind to react as if they're under chronic stress, increasing your heart rate and blood pressure which can compromise your immune system and cause exhaustion if prolonged over time.