Image of business man doing exercises while at his office desk

You might love your job, but when it comes down to staying active, you might not love how your middle handles that sedentary lifestyle quite so much.

Keeping active during the day can give your health a boost, help you lose weight, and even give your mental well being a lift into the bargain.

Today, we’ll give you some simple pointers on how to stay active when you work at a desk all day.

Best of all, getting started is easy so there’s no excuse!

Tired of Sitting All Day? Stand Up!

Standing while you work is one of the simplest ways you can stay active while still working at your desk.

Not only will standing improve your circulation, reduce your risk of obesity, and even improve your blood sugar, it will also enhance your focus at the same time.

Studies have shown people who use standing desks are frequently far more productive than people who don’t. Many companies are starting to recognize this, and standing desks are becoming more readily available so you can stand up while still enjoying easy access to everything you need.

Make the most out of your time and stay active even when you are at your desk by simply getting up out of your chair. It doesn’t get much easier than that!

Take The Stairs Instead of The Elevator

Taking the stairs is a fantastic way to get in a swift aerobic workout with out ever having to leave the office.

Even just a couple of flights on foot can be enough to elevate your heart rate, lower your bad cholesterol, and release endorphins that boost your mental state. As an added bonus, you might even add a few extra years to your life while you’re at it.

Even if you don’t take the stairs every time or go all the way from bottom to top, even some effort is better than none and each time you hit the stairs you’ll be getting in a few of those 30 minutes of exercise you should shoehorn in every day.

Park in The Back

Parking farther away from your building each day will extend the amount of time you spend walking, and get you closer to those 10,000 daily steps you need to nail. You’ll also have a chance to soak in a little fresh air and sunshine before plunging yourself to work.

When there is so much competition for upfront parking, choosing to take a longer walk doesn’t only take some of the stress and frustration out of your busy day, it can also save you a few door dings too.

Walk to Lunch

That inviting teriyaki joint down the road is just a few minutes away, and boy does it taste good!

If you like to eat close to work, consider walking there instead of taking the car or riding the subway.

The stroll will save you a bit of cash and the struggle of having to search once again for a parking spot, and will also be a small but important help in keeping you active.

Swap your Chair for an Exercise Ball or Beanbag

If you can’t stand up at your desk, swapping your chair for an exercise ball or beanbag is a leftfield solution.

While a chair coddles your entire body and means you don’t have to use any muscles at all, an exercise ball is a different story. It makes you sit up straight, tones your muscles, and can help you achieve great core strength.

You might feel a little silly sitting on a ball as you handle your daily office activities, but the changes in your health are worth it. If you feel shy, consider a beanbag. It won’t be quite so effective but it operates on the same principle and might be more acceptable in the average office.

If you work from home, you don’t need to worry about what anyone thinks so think about this simple hack to stay active even while you’re lateral.

Live Close to Work? Bike There!

While this isn’t something you can really do if you live hours away, biking to work when you live relatively close by can give you an intense workout and let you relax for the rest of the day knowing you already hit your exercise goals.

If you can’t handle a full commute back and forth, you can often form a balance by taking your bike with you one day, and leaving it at the office. Leave your car there the next day and bike home. Bike back the next day, but take your car home. This half-and-half approach can be a smart compromise.

If you live some distance away but still want to try this, consider taking the train or bus until you are closer, and then getting off part way there. This will bring you nearer to your goal while still giving you some exercise.

Get Up Every Hour

You can also break up the excess hours of sitting by simply getting up and walking around the office once every hour or so.

This brief walk and stretch works wonders for your body, and will allow circulation to improve as well as saving you from the discomfort of sitting for extended and unbroken periods of time.

While these small breaks may not burn many calories, they will go a long way toward making you feel healthier. Sitting for prolonged spells is extremely tough on the body, and can lead to chronic health conditions that can really make you suffer further down the track.

Bring The Whole Office Into It: Arrange Some Walking Meetings

No one wants to rush from sitting at their desk to slump down in a meeting instead.

If your entire office is struggling to stay active, suggest that meetings are carried out while walking instead. This relatively new phenomenon is rapidly gaining traction and becoming a popular way to conduct millennial meetings.

Your whole team will benefit from heart-healthy exercise, and as an added bonus, that long-winded guy who drones on forever will have to be able to do so while keeping pace with the group!


Good health doesn’t have to come in the form of long hours spent at the gym or gallons of sweat spilled.

Simply snatching a few added steps each day by taking the stairs or parking a little further away can help you make small but worthwhile tweaks without feeling like you’re putting in any extra effort.

Even if none of these ideas inspire you, there is probably some minor way in which you can change your activity during the day to make sure you are sitting less and moving more. Whether that’s squeezing a stress ball or getting up to stretch more frequently, any changes you choose to make will be healthier ones.

It’s eminently possible to stay active when you work at a desk all day. It just takes a little imagination and equally little effort to make a substantial difference to your overall health.

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