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How To Lose Weight With An Office Job?

Let’s be honest for a moment:

Working an office job and losing weight can be quite challenging. Between the demanding work schedule and spending most of the day in a seated position, getting active can be difficult.

To help you set yourself on the right path, we’ve put together a list of eight tips on how to lose weight with an office job.

Let’s get to it…

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But First: Why Do People In An Office Often Struggle to Stay Active?

Well, the most obvious roadblock is the nature of the job. Office workers have to spend extended periods in a seated position each day, limiting their ability to move around. If the job demands sitting for seven or eight hours each day, it becomes incredibly challenging for people to move around for the recommended amount of time.

Another reason has to do with momentum. We are creatures of habit, and we enjoy creating routines for ourselves. This can be good or bad, depending on what kinds of habits we build. The problem is, many people with an office job find themselves building momentum toward a sedentary lifestyle.

Before they know it, years of sedentary living have passed, and they can find themselves overweight and with a range of health concerns.

The Dangers of a Sedentary Lifestyle

The most apparent issue related to a sedentary lifestyle is unwanted weight gain. This occurs because sedentary individuals burn much fewer calories than active people. As a result, their metabolic rate is lower, and they need fewer calories to sustain themselves. Overeating becomes relatively easy, and the extra calories get stored as fat.

Other significant issues with a sedentary lifestyle are the increased risk of heart disease, metabolic syndrome, depression, and loss of muscle mass.

In addition, lack of physical activity is a huge predictor of poor mental health. People who don’t move enough are more depressed, anxious, and less satisfied with their lives.

8 Tips To Lose Weight If You Work An Office Job

You might feel like weight loss is nearly impossible with an office job. You’re chained to your desk, and you can barely find any time for anything else. 

The good news is, there are plenty of fantastic ways to improve your nutrition, sneak physical activity in, and start losing weight.

And the best part? None of these relate to an overly restrictive diet or an incredibly demanding training plan. 

Below we discuss our top tips on how to lose weight with an office job.

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1. Walk Or Cycle To Work

It all starts with your commute to work. How do you do it? Do you use public transportation? Or maybe you drive a car?

In either case, why not go for a bike or simply walk to work? Both activities are incredibly beneficial and help with weight loss. And the best part? Both are free. You no longer have to spend hundreds of dollars every month on gas for the car, insurance, and more.

Plus, these alternatives are great because you get to skip rush hour traffic and not have to worry about parking and whatnot. 

If you typically use public transportation and walking all the way seems too far, why not get off a couple of stops earlier and walk the remaining distance? This is still a great way to bump your step count, burn extra calories, and improve your weight loss efforts.

2. Train At Lunch

How do you typically spend your lunch break? Do you do something productive, or do you, like most, finish your meal in twenty minutes and look at memes for the remainder of the time?

There is certainly nothing wrong with taking a break at lunch – after all, this is what the break is for. But why not use that time to do something good for yourself and break up your workday?

If your company has a gym, that’s an amazing perk you should be taking advantage of. Go for a 30-minute workout, and you’ll still have enough time left for a nice lunch. Alternatively, you could go for a run.

This is a fantastic way to burn extra calories, avoid sedentary time, and improve weight loss. And the best part? Having a mid-day workout is a great way to elevate your mood and boost your afternoon productivity, thanks to the flood of endorphins your body releases in response to exercise.

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3. Prepare Your Lunch 

Preparing your meals ahead of time is fantastic because it saves you time, effort, and money. Plus, you don’t have to worry about what you’ll be eating later. The best part is, by preparing some meals ahead of time, you’re more likely to eat healthily and stick with your plan.

Preparing your lunch is a simple but incredibly effective tactic you can use to eat healthily and avoid the temptation of fast food and other unhealthy choices around noon.

4. Stay As Active as Possible

NEAT, short for non-exercise activity thermogenesis, is a measure of the calories we burn from non-exercise activities every day. Climbing stairs, playing with our kids, cleaning, walking to the mailbox, and every other type of movement is part of NEAT.

Interestingly, NEAT can cause a considerable calorie burn every day. Little by little, extra movement can results in hundreds, even thousands of additional calories getting burned every day.

Great ways to boost your NEAT include:

  • Walking or cycling to work (as we discussed above).
  • Walk to talk to your coworkers instead of emailing them.
  • Get up to drink water more frequently.
  • Get up every half an hour for some brief stretching and deep breathing.

5. Drink Water

Water is the essence of life, and staying hydrated is vital for our well-being, energy levels, and mental health. Interestingly, water also plays an important role in flushing out toxins, keeping our kidneys healthy, and improving weight loss efforts.

Most notably, water fills up the stomach and prevents hunger. In many cases, we don’t need a quick snack; we just need to drink a glass of water. Making it a habit to drink more water will help you eat fewer calories, feel more satiated, and lose weight more easily.

Research recommends men should drink up to three litres of water daily. Women should drink around two litres. 

6. Take Advantage Of Fitness Work Perks

If your company offers fitness work perks, you need to take advantage of them. They are fantastic because they make it easier to eat better and move more – two vital components for weight loss.

Great fitness work perks include:

  • On-site exercise facilities.
  • Healthy foods in the kitchen or cafeteria.
  • On-site classes on yoga, pilates, and more.
  • Wellness and fitness challenges.

7. Take Healthy Snacks To Work

Like preparing your lunch for work, taking healthy snacks to the office is another excellent way to keep hunger at bay and avoid poor choices.

Let’s face it:

Afternoons can be slow, and many people find themselves thinking about food. It could be because of boredom or natural hunger. Whatever the case might be, most people think, “What harm is there in grabbing a biscuit?”

Taking healthy snacks is great because you get to enjoy healthier alternatives when the cravings strike. Fantastic options include fresh and dried fruits, nuts, jerky, homemade granola bars, and similar.

8. Stand Up At Work

Besides eating well and exercising regularly, standing up more often is another fantastic way to boost your NEAT, burn extra calories, and improve weight loss.

One obvious option is to get a standing desk. These can be great because you can adjust the height and stand up while working. You might also find yourself wondering what to do during a slow period. Why not stand up, go to the window and observe the scenery? Breathe deeply, meditate for a bit, and sit back down.

Take opportunities to stand up when they present themselves. This is a great way to shake things up, keep yourself productive, break up stagnation, and burn extra calories. 

how to lose weight with an office job

How To Lose Weight With An Office Job?

There you have it. Eight fantastic ways to boost your physical activity, burn extra calories, improve your nutrition, and start losing weight, even if you work an office job.

You don’t have to do each of them. You can start with just a couple and work from there.

Here is a quick recap on how to lose weight with an office job:

  • Walk or cycle to work. This is a great way to save money and burn many calories every day.
  • Use your lunch break to have a quick workout, invigorate yourself, and boost your productivity.
  • Prepare your lunch at home. This is great for saving money and making sure you have something healthy for lunch.
  • Make a conscious effort to move around more, boost your NEAT, and burn extra calories.
  • Drink more water throughout the day, especially around meals. It’s a great way to stay hydrated, improve your health, and feel more satiated.
  • Take advantage of fitness work perks like an on-site training facility, healthy foods in the kitchen or cafeteria, and on-site classes.
  • Take healthy snacks to work. Fruits, nuts, and jerky are always a great option.
  • Make a conscious effort to stand up more often. This is great for breaking up stagnation, burning extra calories, and staying productive at work.

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Gaz Davies

I am a strength and conditioning coach and lifelong martial artist based in London, UK. After studying BSc Chemistry at university I started coaching in a commercial fitness gym. For the last four years, I have worked exclusively with combat athletes looking to increase athletic performance and dominate on the mats!
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