Restless at your workstation?

Restless at your workstation? Get up and MOVE!
Restless, fidgety, irritable. These words described me. I was restless at work. Sitting at the computer, answering emails and phone calls, developing slide presentations, and creating educational materials were tasks that were becoming more difficult daily. The solution was not expensive, did not require training or new skill development, and certainly was within my ability to fix. What did I need to do? MOVE!

The Dangers of Sitting
Sitting has been described as dangerous and harmful to both our physical and mental health. Heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers have been linked to a sedentary lifestyle. Some of the health challenges, caused by sitting for long periods daily, include excess body fat around the waist, increased blood pressure, a decline in energy levels, high blood sugar, and obesity. Research has linked long periods of sitting to an increased risk of death from heart disease and some cancers, as well as to a higher risk of anxiety and depression.

Prolonged sitting, even if working, can cause you to feel more fatigued than a vigorous workout. If you are restless at work because of prolonged sitting, you may be less productive overall.

Movement Strategies while at Work
A helpful solution? MOVE! Currently, while working from an alternate work location, I am using a large box to elevate my computer so that I can stand while working. Simply standing has allowed me to stretch more often, walk in place, and has eased my restlessness and fatigue as I work.

Increase movement at work:
• Stand or walk while talking on the phone
• Ask your employer for a “standing” desk or improvise with a high table, large box, crate, or other item to elevate your workstation
• Schedule a 5- or 10-minute walk once per hour (you will be more productive, making those 5 minutes away from your workstation a valuable time investment)
• Do not eat lunch at your desk
• Save 10 minutes of your lunch break for a brisk walk
• Take the stairs instead of the elevator
• Develop a habit of standing and stretching once per hour
• For those one-on-one meetings with co-workers, ask them to take a walk with you instead of sitting at a desk or conference table (great conversations may happen as energy begins to flow from physical movement)
• Set a goal to move more; write down your plan for increasing movement in your calendar

Health Benefits of Moving
Physical movement will help you burn more calories, improve muscle tone, improve your mood, and increase your energy level. It has even been linked to better sleep! The U.S. Department of Heath and Human Services provides these recommended physical activity guidelines for adults: 150 minutes of activity per week that is moderate in intensity OR 75 minutes of physical activity per week that is considered vigorous. Move more for a happier, healthier life!

Long-term health benefits of physical activity include:
• Weight control
• Lower risk of heart disease
• Lower risk of diseases like type 2 diabetes & some cancers
• Better physical functioning such as improved ability to complete tasks
• Stronger bones and muscles
• Reduced anxiety and depression
• Improved sleep

When feelings of restlessness and irritability threaten to derail your productivity ~ take a break! But, do not just take a “break,” take a hike around the building, jog in place, do a few stretches, but most of all, get out of your chair! Make it your goal to sit less and to stand and move more!


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Posted: May 21, 2020

Category: Health & Nutrition, UF/IFAS Extension, Work & Life
Tags: Fatigue, Health, Move, Movement, Physical Movement, Productivity, Restless At Work, Sedentary Lifestyle, Sitting, Strategies, Worklife


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Beth Kerr

November 11, 2020

Glad you like the suggestions! Have a wonderful holiday!

Mary Elaine Vickers
November 11, 2020

Great ideas! I am printing this off and saving it. Thanks!

Joseph Hopkins
October 31, 2020

Hello Ghicks, This is a very Good story the student are planted two trees it's very good work for our nature. Thank you for share this article.

Beth Kerr
August 10, 2020

Thank you, Tracy! There are many great simple and inexpensive cleaning ideas that can save us money at the stores!

Tracy Fedor
August 7, 2020

Beth Kerr is a awesome advocate for the best things in life are simple and good. Thank you .

Yvonne Florian
June 24, 2020

I recently had to remove a Red Rat Snake from my home. I had the doors and windows open and 13 newly hatched chicks peeping in the dining room. I think she smelled the chicks, came in under the screen door and got lost under my bed, where she spent the night. I found her in my bathroom next day and was able to catch and release her back out in the yard, after a photo of course. Mom the snake catcher. She was over four feet long!

June 23, 2020

Thanks! Just came across a six-foot snake in my backyard. I didn't stop to identify it, but this will be helpful if we ever cross paths again.

May 24, 2020

Well said Thank you for the great information.

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