It sometimes feels like it's impossible to get exercise when you're working at least 40 hours a week. Before work, there's no time, and after work you have to make dinner and run errands. But by taking advantage of your workday lunch hour, you can get in some surprisingly good physical fitness. The best part is that working out during lunch will help you stay awake and alert for the rest of the work day, increasing your productivity, creativity and overall happiness. Not sure where to start in adding fitness to your lunch hour? Here are some ideas for lunch hour fitness.
1. Talk a walk in the park. The easiest way to get in some lunch hour fitness is to take a walk. Anyone can walk, and even if there aren't defined walking trails in your area, it's something you won't look silly doing out on the street. Getting into nature for your lunch hour is best if possible, so look for nearby parks. Bring some walking shoes to work with you, and you're ready to go. If it's warm out, you can even cut a couple of minutes out of your transition time by buying flip-flops made specifically for walking that contain arch support. The best part about walking during your lunch hour is that you probably won't even get sweaty enough to need to take a shower when you get back to the office.
2. Try a class at the gym. If you're able to squeeze a little extra time out of your lunch hour, see what classes are offered at a nearby gym at lunchtime. Most gyms offer at least one class each day at lunchtime, often spinning or yoga, which are great ways to make the most of your lunch hour. Just remember that you'll need to be able to take enough time away from work to get to the gym, take the class, shower and then get back to work.
3. Take solo time at the gym. If you don't have time to do a whole class, go to the gym on your own and spend some time on the stationary bike, treadmill or lift weights. If your office doesn't have its own gym, it's possible a nearby office has one and would let you work out a deal to spend time there.
4. Bring free weights to work. Find an empty conference room and lift weights without leaving the building. If you're unfamiliar with weightlifting, you may want to attend a few classes or get personal training to learn how to lift without hurting yourself. You might also choose to watch some instructional videos online. Close the door if you feel silly, but odds are that you'll inspire your coworkers to try to fit fitness into their days too.
5. Do yoga in the park or the conference room. If you already have a yoga practice, you can do yoga moves pretty much anywhere you want by bringing your mat with you to work. If you've never done yoga before, bring your laptop into an empty conference room with you and follow along with instructional videos you find online.
6. Climb stairs. Climbing stairs is an easy way to get your blood pumping, and they're easy to find in almost every office —and usually fairly private. There's a reason the stair machine is one of the most hated at the gym: climbing stairs is genuinely hard work. Try running up the stairs, running back down, and then doing modified push-ups on the steps before starting over again. About the Author:Emily Williams writes about workplace health and safety for ETrain Today .