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Work to Live: Health tips for the workplace

Work to Live: Health tips for the workplace

In these unique times, a day in your home office may feel like a marathon. So, with the help of experts, we’ve rounded up some top tips to boost your physical and mental health throughout the work day.

We know many of you will now be working from home. This could be at a makeshift desk, a dedicated room or home office, or a hodge podge of locations as you navigate more than one person at home working. Some find it easier than others to be productive at home, but we can all put things in place to look after our health and wellbeing.

Enter the experts. We have some tips to help you manage, from your setup, to extra-curricular activities to keep your body (and mind) healthy.

Sitting pretty

Chances are, your home office set up isn’t as comfortable as the office, but never fear. Rishi Loatey from the British Chiropractic Association gives us the lowdown on how to remove the ache from a desk job.

1. The top of your computer screen should be positioned at eye level. If it is too low, use a computer stand. A large book or ream of paper can be used as long as the screen is safely positioned.

2. Relax your whole back into the seat, making sure your bottom is at the back of the chair. The shoulder blades should be touching the back of the chair and head against the headrest.

3. Your feet should be flat on the floor, hips positioned slightly above your knees. Keep elbows at desk height. A chair with an armrest is preferable because this gives the arms much-needed support.

4. Laptop users should try and raise their computer, so the screen is at eye level, and plug in a regular keyboard and mouse if possible because this allows them to adopt a more natural and comfortable position.

Work meal plan

Although it can be harder – try to stick to routine with your meals while working from home. It will help you to take regular breaks. Aim to incorporate essential vitamins and minerals, plus protein, healthy fats, and fibre to keep you full. Don’t forget your veggies!

Breakfast: Start the day with eggs. Set them to boil before hopping in the shower, then either serve with toast or some spinach or smoked salmon.

Timesaver option: Grab a filling breakfast smoothie with milk or a milk alternative, oats, berries and crushed seeds. Vitamin C and phytonutrient antioxidants promote disease prevention.

Lunch: Grain-based salad with chicken and avocado, or a vegetarian option like lentil or bean-based soup with wholegrain bread. Resist the temptation of white foods teamed with a sugary snack and a soft drink. These can cause blood sugar imbalances, and foods rich in unhealthy fats can leave you feeling lethargic as your body digests them.

Remember: Stay hydrated to avoid feeling foggy and unfocused. Try “sexing up” water with cucumber, strawberries, basil, mint, rosemary or citrus fruits.

Class action (from your living room)

You don’t need to miss out on your favourite classes because you’re stuck at home. As well as your government approved daily exercise, there are a lot of gyms and fitness studios making the most of a digital switch up. Tune in to a YouTube or IGTV channel and get some exercise in your very own living room.

This doesn’t have to be about any set goals either – it’s simply to help you keep active, happy, and healthy during a pretty unusual time.

1. Joe Wicks

Dubbed the UK’s PE teacher, Joe is holding daily half hour workouts at 9am on his YouTube channel. Some are especially for kids, but don’t let that stop you! People all over the country work out alongside Joe and stream their efforts to social media.

2. NHS Fitness Studio

Take your pick from 24 instructor-led videos across aerobics exercise, strength and resistance, and pilates and yoga categories.The workouts have been created by fitness experts at InstructorLive and range from 10 to 45 minutes.

3. Bootcamp Pilates ONline

For a workout designed to help core and posture, any desk-related niggles will be relieved with reformer Pilates exercises. During the lockdown a host of pre-recorded and live-streaming sessions with trainers is available via Zoom – including one on one sessions.

Don’t forget to manage your mental health too - Sanctus has a host of resources on its website.

Support from Workspace

To find out more about improving your fitness, mental health and productivity in the workplace, we’ve got plenty of food for thought articles on our site.

Workspace has articles featuring expert advice, drawing from our wealth of experience including ways to help your business survive Coronavirus. We are here to help you Stress Less and adapt your business in this new landscape.

Keep an eye on our social channels to see tips and advice, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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