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Burning Fat in the Cubicle

By Kat Lively

You want to lose weight, but you just don't have the time. You work eight hours in the office, and when you get home there are too many chores waiting for you. Dinner, kids, housecleaning…and by the time everything is done it is time for bed and the new day, where everything starts all over again.

Intentions are always good, but intentions don't assist with weight loss. You need to take action. Now, it is not suggested that you quit your job, or leave your family or let the dishes pile up in the sink. One important key to weight loss is constant movement. By burning the calories you consume throughout the day, you stand to lose pounds. You may ask how you can lose weight while being chained to an office desk all day. It can be done, with a bit of self-control and know-how. Here are a few tips to get started.

Avoid unnecessary snacking! If you are like many American who work nine to five in the cubicle, you may have noticed you have put on a few pounds over time. The morning pastries and doughnuts left in the employee lounge are certainly not helping matters, and when your only exercise is the short walk to the vending machines you know something has to be done. But how do you combat the desire to snack as you work? Long hours may lead to boredom and the temptation to nibble in between reports, true, but you can fight back.

Always keep water at your desk, and drink when you have urges to get a candy bar. Rather than plunk change into a machine for something unhealthy, bring a more nutritious treat to work. Many grocery stores offer bulk selections of veggies and dried fruit, trail mixes and other treats. Just mind the labels, because some things sold in the organic or "health food" sections may have added sugars and sodium content you don't need.

Take five to stretch! Prolong sitting can be detrimental to your health. You might find your posture failing, poor circulation in your limbs, and you may feel fatigued. A human being can only do so much in one position, so it is necessary to get the blood pumping.

Take small motivational breaks at work when you can. Stand up, stretch, engage in deep breathing exercises. Consult a yoga manual and learn a few positions you can do in a small space, as yoga practice offers many benefits with regards to mental and physical health. A few breaks during the day can make a world of difference and improve your physical and mental abilities, not to mention your work.

Walk! In this age of computer communication, you may notice co-workers chatting via instant messaging and intercoms. While effective, it doesn't do much for your physique just to sit. If what you have to communicate is not urgent and doesn't require you to be at your desk, get up and confer with your co-workers face to face. The mere acts of standing and walking is enough to start the blood pumping to your body. You won't burn the same amount of calories as a marathon runner at the big race, but you will be moving. Every step counts.

When you go to lunch, choose places within walking distance of the office. Don't let poor weather discourage you from the opportunity to stretch your legs (unless, it's a complete monsoon out there). Better yet, make time during this period to eat and exercise with an extended power walk.

Use the Buddy System! Losing weight can be a daunting task, more so if you go at it alone. Why not recruit a co-worker or two to join you on this journey? A group walk during lunch can not only improve one's health, but it can do wonders for office morale and socializing. You may find you have more in common with your peers than you realize.

A healthy employee is often a happy employee. Just taking a few steps for motivation during work can contribute to a gradual, effective weight loss with many more possible benefits.

Kat Lively is a freelance health writer for Compuslim, hoodia pills for appetite suppression, FlowCushion, the ergonomic seat cushion for home and office, and for Rainfloresta, quality acai products for good health.

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