Staying active whilst working from home

Like a huge number of people more, I’m working from home. I’ve worked from home quite a bit over the last few years, but always with frequent visits to the office or customers.

My job is all online so I have no issue with actually getting stuff done. And I’ve always set really strict boundaries between work and home, so I have good habits around switching off in the evenings and at weekends.

However, one thing I’ve never cracked is keeping active. Over the first part of lockdown, I was easily racking up my daily steps even though we weren’t leaving the house. Running around after a newborn and a toddler has some benefits! But now they’re at nursery and I’m working, I’m pretty sure my Fitbit thinks I’m dead for 8 hours a day.

On days when I make the effort to get out for a walk/run or do some yoga from YouTube, I always feel better for it and more productive. But I definitely haven’t cracked making it habit or part of my routine. It’s so easy to sit down at the laptop and not move, save to get food and caffeine, until it’s time to go pick up the kids.

What is the best way to make getting active. Here are some tips I’ve picked up from more active friends!

  • Podcasts / audiobooks – finding something really gripping to listen to makes the minutes melt away on a walk. And you want to go regularly to listen to the next episode / chapter!
  • Find the time that works for you – I know I’m a morning person and always have been. I’d much rather get up early, then turn into a hibernating hedgehog in the afternoons. Find your sweet spot and plan to exercise then to maximise your motivation.
  • Couch to 5k – or other apps. These have a timetable built in and push you to keep to the routine. Once you’ve worked through 8 weeks of running, it’ll be easier to make that a habit.
  • Use your existing routine – walk the long way home from the school run, go an extra loop of the park with the dog each day, push the kids 10% higher on the swings… adding to what you already do makes it much easier to fit activity into the day.
  • Book out your work calendar – creating an appointment in your diary that colleagues can’t book over makes it easier to find time to keep active in the day.

I know I need to follow more of this advice myself, especially in winter. If you have any more helpful tips and tricks for how to keep active when you’re working from home, please let me know!

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