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7 Ways to Sit Less (When You Work a Desk Job)

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Sitting for long periods of time during the day can wreak havoc on your body and increase your risk of serious health conditions like cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes and even premature death, but how are you supposed to spend less time sitting if you work a desk job? The good news is, even if you’re paid to sit at a desk all day, there are plenty of ways to minimize the time you spend sitting and spend more time moving around the office! Keep reading to find out seven ways you can sit less without sacrificing your productivity at work!

7. Find Excuses to Move Around

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Not everything at work has to be done sitting down. Instead of emailing your coworker, walk over to his cubicle instead and have a conversation with him. Take that phone call standing up or pacing around your desk area. Refill your water bottle at a fountain that’s a little farther away. Take the stairs to the next floor up for your restroom break. There are plenty of ways to work moving around a little into your workday! If all else fails, make sure stand up and stretch out at least every 15 minutes to get the blood flowing and ward off achy, tired muscles.

6. Set an Alarm

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If you have trouble remembering to get up and move around frequently throughout the day, consider setting an alarm to go off every hour to remind you to get up and stretch, take a water break or walk around the office for a few minutes. Having an alarm set may seem silly, but being hyper-focused on your current work projects can make it easy to forget to stand up and move around easy. If you work in an environment where an alarm going off every hour would disrupt your coworkers, set a silent alarm to pop up on your computer monitor every hour, or use your smartphone to set a vibrating alarm, instead.

5. Re-Work Your Workspace

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In today’s work environment, we tend to set things up so everything is within arm’s reach all the time, which can hinder our need to move around more often. Consider changing things up to encourage more movement throughout the day, instead! Don’t keep commonly-used items like your stapler, notepads or extra pens at your desk. That way, when you need a new pen or a few paperclips, you’ll be forced to walk over to the supply closet to get them. This gives you a great excuse to move around without looking like you’re slacking off.

4. Take Your Meeting To-Go

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Have a meeting with the boss this afternoon? Why not ask your boss to join you on a stroll around the office or to a nearby coffee shop, instead? Not only do walking meetings allow you to move around rather than sit for long periods of time, but walking or standing has also been shown to improve creativity and collaboration. If the person you’re meeting with isn’t up for a walk, ask if you can remain standing rather than sitting down when she offers you a seat. A simple “I’ve been sitting all morning and would love to stand for a bit, if that’s alright with you” will usually suffice, and may even encourage your meeting partner to stand, as well.

Kara is more than just a do-it-all writer; she's also a jetsetter who has experienced cities and cultures around the world! Find Kara on LinkedIn!

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