Calling all cubicle dwellers: What if you could get a workout at your everyday 9-to-5 that’s just as good as the pricey gym down the street?
Ok, it’s true that there aren’t any StairMasters or spin classes, but most offices really do have the equipment you need to get a pretty strenuous workout. And bonus—you’re already there, so no excuses.
Got a desk and a chair? Then you’re set.
Third conference call of the day droning on and on? Stand up, step a few feet away from your desk, place your hands on the edge and lower down into pushup. Because you’re at an angle, it’ll will be much easier to complete than if you dropped to the ground, but it’s still shockingly effective. Your chest, triceps, shoulders, abs and glutes will all get a major workout.
If you’re trying to get to inbox zero, you’ll need a little stamina. Next, you can do chair dips in between emails. If you have a rolling chair, place it against the wall. Grip the front of the chair, scoot your butt off the edge, and lower your body down towards the ground. Let your back graze the chair as you lower down and your elbows bend straight back. This is a killer tricep workout.
If you want six-pack abs, then try this move on for size. As you sit in the chair, hold onto the sides with your hands and raise your knees up to tap the bottom of the desk. Keep your navel pulled in as tight as you can, really focusing on using the lower abs to lift the legs. A few of these and your abs will be on fire.
Nothing’s better for your butt than a good-old fashioned squat. Stand in front of your chair, feet hip-distance apart, toes slightly turned out, keeping all of the weight in your heels (if you’re wearing heeled shoes, take them off) as you squat down like you’re about to sit in the chair. Don’t fully sit, just tap your butt to the chair and push through the heels to stand back up. When you come to a standing position, push your hips forward and squeeze your buns. This is just the trick to make those pencil skirts look sensational!
Our last exercise is also the most punishing: pushing your chair while planking. (Warning: Only do this one if you feel comfortable planking and want to step up your game. It’s not for newbies.) Place your forearms on the seat of your chair and walk the feet out into plank. While keeping your glutes tight, pelvis tucked under and abs tight, push the chair slightly forward and then pull it back towards the body. Even though you’re moving the chair only inches, it’s an incredible way to throw your balance off and work every little muscle in your core.
Here’s to making your office a gym and getting a few more reps in during the day!
Illustration by Karley Koenig
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