Tag Archives: exercise

‘Tis the season to be jolly – and healthy

Photo by Nationaal Archief via Flickr.com | Lacing up some old skates and a taking few laps around the pond can help burn extra holiday calories.

The holiday season has kicked off which means plenty of parties where it’s absolutely required to indulge in the abundance of tasty treats. I’m sure you made plans to work it off at the gym over the weekend but after a trip to the local bar with some long lost friends, the work week is back and you just didn’t find the time. Welcome to the holiday health hazard.

Let’s get real, it’s December in Michigan and for the next few months the weather is only going to get worse, the flu and other bugs may invite themselves to parties, and you will be running on empty due to your packed social calendar.

It’s time to add some healthy habits to your holiday to-do list to avoid packing on an extra layer or getting sick this winter.

Here are a few simple suggestions to get you through the season:

Eat healthy

Sure, fast food is quick, convenient and tasty but is it worth sacrificing your health? According to Livestrong.com eating meals loaded with calories, fat, cholesterol, sugar and salt creates nutritional deficiencies, causes weight gain and shortens your life. Take a couple extra minutes each day to pack a healthy lunch. Choose fruits and vegetables instead of burgers and fries. Eating out less will likely ease the burden on your pocketbook, too.

Work it out

Big or small, having a daily exercise routine is key to maintaining a healthy body. This is especially important if you sit at a desk all day like me. As former Franconian Angela Hernandez so eloquently explains in her blog, there are many opportunities to be healthy at work. It’s time to stand up people! Avoid phone calls to coworkers; walk to their desk. Take a stroll during lunch or a periodic lap around the office when you need a break. The opportunities are there, take the initiative and be more active at work.

Wash your hands

According to this Time Magazine article, during the winter people spend more time indoors in close contact with others. This leads to an increased risk of infection from germs and viruses. Wash your hands regularly to help prevent the spread of bacteria and those annoying winter illnesses.

Rest up

Staying healthy might be as simple as getting some rest. The holidays are a hectic time of year filled with late nights at the office, family parties and weekend celebrations. You sacrifice sleep and rely on caffeine to get you through the day. According to hypochondriacs’ favorite website, WebMD, sleep deprivation can lead to serious health problems including heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, stroke and diabetes.

So, when you bundle up and head out the door to your next holiday party remember to stay away from the pie, wash your hands, choose celery and make it home in time to watch A Christmas Story while you fall asleep at a reasonable hour.

…and to all a good night!

Dan Stocking is an assistant account executive at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach him at (313) 567-5094 or stocking@franco.com.  Follow him on Twitter @danielstocking.

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Five ways to stay active at the office

Taking a 15 minute walk each day is a great way to fit in a bit of exercise at the office.

College was a busy time. Between juggling a full class load, internships and professional development groups, it seemed nearly impossible to find time to fit in a workout.

Back when I was at Central Michigan University, I can remember thinking, “As soon as I graduate and get a job I’m going to get fit – I mean, what else will I have to do after work?” I obviously underestimated the intensity of having a career and all the things that come with it.

Having a full-time job, I’ve come to understand that making it to the gym before or after work is just as much, if not more, of a challenge as it was in college. That’s why I’ve been making an effort to stay active at work. Here are five simple ways to help you get up and get active during the workday.

  • Go for a 15 minute walk. One of the easiest ways to stay active at work is to schedule a 15 minute walk each day. Sure, it can be hard to pull yourself away from your desk, but taking a short walk is a quick and easy way to get in a bit of exercise. Working in the Renaissance Center, we (Franco) couldn’t ask for a better walking area than the Detroit Riverfront. And ladies, keep a pair of tennis shoes under your desk to help you avoid using the “I don’t have good shoes on today” excuse.
  • Stand instead of sit. Common sense will tell you that it’s not good to sit in a chair for eight hours a day. If you need further proof, check out this infographic outlining the “truth about sitting”, including the fact that research has shown people with sitting jobs have twice the rate of cardiovascular disease than people with standing jobs. It’s time to take stand.
  • Substitute a yoga ball for your office chair. If you’re going to sit, you might as well work out your core. Swapping out your office chair for an exercise ball is a great way to stay active at the office and engage muscles that wouldn’t otherwise be used while sitting. Sitting on a ball requires you to maintain balance and sit upright, which is good for your core muscles and your posture.
  • Take the stairs. This one is pretty self explanatory, but taking the stairs instead of the elevator really does add up. Sure it might tack on a few extra minutes, but getting in this little bit of cardio each day is definitely a good thing.
  • Deliver messages in person. Within the office, we seem to have become so accustomed to emails, phone calls and even instant messaging that we rarely make a point to deliver messages in person anymore. Make an effort to walk across the office to tell your co-worker that important message, or even just stop over to say hello. This brief break from sitting will not only help get your blood flowing, but face-to-face communication is helpful for team building.

Genna Young stays active at the office by opting to sit on a yoga ball instead of a chair.

What other ways have you used to stay active while at work?

Angela Hernandez is an account executive at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5008 or hernandez@franco.com. Follow her on Twitter at @AngelaHernandez.