There’s a strong correlation between exercise and productivity. In fact, one study found that on workout days, participants scored 21% higher for concentration at work, 22% higher for finishing their work on time and 41% higher when it comes to how motivated they are to work.
Exercise helps all areas of our lives, and our productivity is just one of them. Here are ten ways to get some more exercise and to increase your productivity at the same time.
- Walk around the office
Olivia Wilde of Aussie writing service says, “We’ve made it a policy to spend five minutes every hour just walking around the office. Not only does it get the blood flowing, but also it provides a great opportunity to check in with other teams and to see exactly what’s happening around the company.”
- Break up the day
Dan Brown, the bestselling author of Angels & Demons and The Da Vinci Code, takes a break every hour to do some push ups. That might be too extreme for most people, but it does go to show how even when you’re your own boss it can help to take exercise breaks to boost productivity.
- Get a standing desk
Sitting down for more than six hours a day increases the death rate by 20% for men and 40% for women. Getting a standing desk forces you to be more active, reducing bad cholesterol levels and helping you to burn more calories without even noticing it.
- Get an exercise ball
Simply switching from an office chair to an exercise ball can help you to exercise a different set of muscles and to reduce the impact of sitting too much. If you can’t get a standing desk, an exercise ball is a reasonable alternative.
- Wear weights
You can pick up a set of wearable rates for the same as it would cost for a couple of cups of coffee. You can wear these weights as you go about your day, whether it’s a vest or whether you’re wearing weights on your ankles and wrists. You’ll lose weight and gain muscle without even noticing.
- Have sex
No, not in the office. Jokes aside, a healthy sex life can help to reduce stress and promote sleep, so it’s pretty easy to see how that can give you an edge in the workplace.
- Step outside
Simply taking the time to head outside for five minutes of fresh air can help you to get some extra exercise whilst simultaneously giving you a chance to clear your mind and refocus. You don’t need to be a smoker to step outside for five minutes every hour.
- Take the stairs
Instead of grabbing the lift, take the stairs. It’ll take the same amount of time but give you a little bit of extra exercise that you might otherwise have been missing.
- Walk and talk
Share the benefits with colleagues by walking and talking, having meetings on the move to kill two birds with one stone. You might be surprised at how quickly you can overcome a roadblock when you hit the road and discuss the problem while walking through the park instead of sitting around the boardroom table.
- Leave the phone alone
If you work in a large office, it can be tempting to call someone from across the room or to use emails, Slack and other communication channels to reach out to them instead of just walking across the office. Quit being lazy and remember that face-to-face communication is much more efficient.
Getting a little extra exercise can dramatically boost productivity, but only if you’re able to make it a routine part of your day. If you go for a daily jog for an hour then that’s fine, as long as you fit it in on your lunch break. If you’re putting off meetings to go for a run then you’re in trouble. It’s all about finding a healthy balance.
Still, with these tips, even the busiest entrepreneur should be able to spend some more time each day taking care of their body. And when you take care of your body, you’re taking care of your mind. It’s never too late to get started.