How to be healthy in the office: 5 simple steps
The Christmas decorations are safely back in their box, the last of the New Year fizz is finally finished and those stylish Aussie Day swimmers have been stored away for another year…unfortunately other less welcome remnants of the holiday period just simply refuse to budge!
You’ve guessed it, for those of us who have overindulged during the holidays going back to the office can be a tough ask for both body and mind!
The office can be a minefield of tempting treats (who doesn’t conveniently get distracted by the biscuit tin whilst making their 15th hot drink of the morning?!), not to mention crafty colleagues eager to invite you out for post work drinks!
Getting back into a healthy routine will help not only to shed those unwanted kilos but also to revive your mind and spirit for the new year ahead. Healthy body, healthy mind as they say!
With this in mind, I’ve put together 5 simple steps to staying healthy in the office this new year:
- Breakfast like a King
Breakfast is often touted as the most important meal of the day but for those of us racing to get into the office when we’ve already snoozed our alarms 5 times it can often be forgotten! This essential tool for success breaks the overnight fasting period and replenishes our supply of vital nutrients to keep energy levels up enabling us to face whatever challenges the day may bring!
A great way to kickstart your day is a green smoothie – packed full of nutrients and easy to drink on the go! They are a fantastic way to eat some greens early in the morning and get your digestion system going. Try to opt for a veggie based smoothie rather than one loaded with fruit which spikes your blood sugar, causing it to quickly fall making you feel tired and sluggish. As well as greens you can also pack your smoothie with ginger and lemon which are great for cleansing and detoxing the liver after a heavy party season! Simply blitz your smoothie in the morning, pop in the insulated pocket of your Code Republic laptop bag and enjoy a refreshing and reviving start to your day!
- Pack lunch like a pro
It’s easy to fall into the trap of buying lunch at work every day but not only can this be tough on your bank balance it also means you don’t have control over what fuel you are putting into your body. We all lead very busy lives, often juggling many different roles in business and at home and preparing a healthy lunch to take to work is often the last thing on our to do list! But don’t worry, we have some easy tips to ensure you can eat a healthy lunch every day!
Salad is often our go to lunch, but the same old leaves can get very boring, so we suggest adding new toppings each day to spice up your veggies! Some of our favourite healthy toppings include:
- Avocado – packed full of good fats, vitamins and antioxidants, this should keep you full and healthy!
- Roasted Vegetables – make a little extra with dinner the night before and simply toss through with your salad when you’re ready to eat! Our favourites include sweet potato, capsicum and zucchini to add colour and flavour to your meal.
- Goats cheese or feta – both are lower in fat than other cheeses and the strong taste means a little goes a long way to pep up a boring salad!
- Nuts & Seeds – add some texture and taste whilst also boosting your intake of heart-healthy unsaturated fats, protein, fibre and antioxidants including vitamin E.
- Eggs – a boiled egg adds protein to your lunch to keep you full throughout the day and contains vitamins to keep your eyes healthy and your bones strong.
- Keep sugar cravings at bay
Avoid the temptation of grabbing a sugar laden snack to quell that 3pm slump by packing a variety of healthy snacks in your workbag. Replace those leftover Christmas chocolates still lurking in the office with one of our healthy treats to keep your energy levels up throughout the day!
- Dates and brazil nuts provide a delicious caramel-like treat, full of fibre and serotonin
- Greek full fat yoghurt with berries and cinnamon helps to stabilise your blood sugar
- Almonds and dried apricots will stave off sugar cravings
- Corn thins with cottage cheese and honey will fill you up and satisfy the sweetness
- Raw veggies with hummus will raise your blood sugar levels steadily and help to maintain them
- Stay Active
When we exercise our body releases endorphins, giving us a natural high so we don’t need to reach for that sugary snack. Try to make time to leave your desk every day for a brisk walk of around 10-20 minutes – the fresh air and break from your desk will do wonders for your productivity! If you can’t spare the time to get out of the office, try walking to a colleague’s desk rather than emailing or calling them…the steps will soon add up!
Daily stretching is also important for both your body and your mind. Roll your shoulders forward, then backwards, breathing in and out as you do so and repeat this for 2 minutes… not only will your shoulders thank you for it, your brain will appreciate a chance to meditate and escape from a busy day!
- Avoid that caffeine hit
Ahhh coffee..where would we be without this magical bean?!
Despite making us feel more alert and focussed (both ideal for a busy working day not to mention the morning after a few too many sauvignon blancs!) coffee can be addictive and can lead to disrupted sleep so it is advised to avoid this caffeine heavy drink after midday. But what alternatives are there to fill the void of our soy latte addiction? Believe me there are many out there to try:
- Green Tea –less caffeine than coffee but enough to give you a boost without the jitters, this tea also contains powerful antioxidants
- Liquorice Tea – caffeine free and said to reduce stress and boost energy levels – this sweet and spicy tea has me sold!
- Chai Tea– despite containing less caffeine, this smooth creamy drink will trick your mind into thinking your drinking coffee
- Lemon Water – this option should have a section all of its own! Keep hydrated and aid your digestion by drinking water with a squeeze of lemon throughout the day
- Peppermint tea – fantastic for soothing your tummy (ideal after a long holiday season!) and for revitalizing you, this is a great option to pep you up in the afternoon!
Surely the most important thing to staying healthy in all aspects of life is equilibrium, and so by incorporating some of these ideas into our daily office routine I hope we can all maintain a happy balance of work and play in our office life!