Working from home surely has some clear benefits. No coworkers to pop over to your desk and distract you, you can mostly wear what you want, no long commute, extra time with your pets and kids, not to mention the familiarity and comfort of your own surroundings. However, working from home isn’t always ideal for everyone. It can be easy to skip workouts and healthy meals and slip into a far too sedentary lifestyle if you don’t consciously hold yourself accountable and put in the work to stay active. The good news is, it’s easy to make some simple changes to stay active, get your work done productively and eat well all at the same time. Here are a few practical strategies to help keep you in tip-top shape!
Prep your meals and snacks
This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s by far the best and most powerful tip to keep your healthy eating on-track when you work remotely. It’s nearly impossible to focus when your blood sugar is too low and you haven’t eaten enough. You are far more likely to eat fruits and vegetables when they’re pre-cut and prepared, so try and devote 5-10 minutes in the evening to chop and prepare some healthy snacks for the next day. If you have time and are able to, even prep your lunches! You’re way more likely to snack on veggies when they’re already set and waiting for you in the fridge. This also minimizes temptation to snack on something more convenient.
Limit sugary foods, which cause a fast blood sugar spike (and then massive drop), and try to stick with healthier snacks like fruits, veggies, whole grains, and lean proteins. Your body will feel much better after a snack of hummus & carrots, a hard-boiled egg, plain yogurt with berries, or some apple slices with almond butter than it will with a donut or a bag of chips.
Schedule your day thoughtfully
It is critical to create some structure to your day even a loose, bare-bones outline of your daily plan can help ward off distractions and hold you accountable. Be sure to include a daily workout in your plan, even if it's just a short walk, a quick workout or some stretches. Physically leaving your house at least once per day can also have a huge impact on your productivity and help avoid “cabin fever”.
Try and schedule meal breaks away from your work zone. While it can be tempting to eat at your desk when working, it actually has been shown to increase productivity to have separate, designated mealtimes, away from your workspace. Not only that, eating scheduled meals prevents “mindless grazing” throughout the day, which is even more important considering the easy kitchen access that comes with working in a home office. Consider also including some scheduled relaxation breaks. Just a few minutes of deep breathing, stretching, or meditation can have a huge impact on productivity later in the day.
Drinking plenty of water and staying hydrated is one of the best things you can do to keep your body in tip-top shape. Dehydration can cause headaches, drowsiness and fatigue, which is sure to compromise your alertness and quality of work. Try to have an extra glass of water for every cup of coffee or tea you drink, as those are dehydrating beverages. If you know that drinking enough water is a struggle for you, try investing in a reusable water bottle that you particularly like, or even one that measures the water you’re drinking. Keep in mind that oftentimes when we feel hungry, we are actually thirsty, so grab a sip of water before you reach for a snack!
The takeaway? Don’t let your comfortable and familiar home environment get in the way of your productivity and hard work. By organizing your schedule and designating times for exercise, you can establish a balance to keep your body happy and healthy!
Tell us how you like to stay healthy working from home, we like to hear from you!