It’s 2 pm and you haven’t eaten lunch yet…
Do you know the feeling? When you’re so hungry you feel like you just can’t eat? Or you’re so busy and in “your groove” that taking a break to eat something seems ludicrous? Perhaps you’ve been sitting at your desk so long your legs have gone numb.
Going through the day with out eating and moving about and expecting consistent performance on the job is like asking Martha Stewart to create her best craft with her hands tied behind her back. It’s not “a good thing”. You might be able to get through it, but it won’t be pretty. Your blood sugar levels begin to dwindle, you’re feeling a tad “hangry”, and you can’t remember what you were about to write in that brilliant email that will help close the deal. Can you relate?
This type of routine hurts your body long term….not just during the “hangry” time. On a cellular level, your body begins to use muscle for fuel, your metabolism slows, and you experience nutrient deficiencies. There aren’t enough nutrients to feed your brain, nor enough fat to keep you operating at optimum level. We’ve all been there, so how do we prevent it from happening?
Step 1: Prepare. Don’t walk out of the house in the morning empty handed. You can always carry a can of nuts with you or better yet, a lunch prepared the night before….go ahead, grab that leftover dinner!
Step 2: Create a “crash cart” at your work. Designate a place where everyone in the office can contribute to and use what is made available. Again, nuts are a great choice due to the high content of fat, dried fruits, vegetables, apples, hummus, guacamole, nut butters, and H2O can keep you from a serious “crash” at work when things get so busy you can’t step out of the office for lunch. Please note the absence of any high refined carbohydrates. This is not the time or place to reach for a candy bar, chips or cookies. Your body needs real food to keep energy levels at an optimum level.
Step 3: Move it. You have to make an intentional plan to move more at the office. Consciously choosing to stand every time you’re on the phone, or putting a tool you use often out of your reach which demands you to get up and retrieve it, or making a lap around the office every time you use the restroom can all help prevent an all day “sit in” . This article here is a great read on how detrimental sitting all day can be. “Is Sitting the New Smoking” by Louise Merkx-Quinn at Back in Motion physical therapy refers to a study from the Mayo Clinic. Louise sees a lot of people that come in with pain due to extensive amounts of sitting. In fact, that is how we met. I drive several hours each day in addition to plenty of time at my computer and that led to a bulging disc in my neck. I work out 3-4 days a week and yet I was still susceptible to the dangers of sitting.
Step 4: Get your office in on the action. Ask your co workers and employees to join you in your efforts. Having accountability is a proven way to success.
Your health should be your priority. If you have your health, you are more productive in the office and bring more benefit to your family, friends and co-workers. Implementing all or just a few of these steps can keep you on track with your health goals. Avoid the empty tank syndrome and keep your energy levels consistent. Instead of crash and burns at 2 pm, grab a tall glass of water, go for the lap around the office and refuel with a healthy lunch you brought from home or a few filling snacks from your office “crash cart”. You got this.