10-Minute Office Workout for Busy People

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A woman sitting in an office at a desk stretching her arms
Author Name: Beth Rush
Date: Wednesday January 8, 2020

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Even if you love your job, it’s tough to sit down for eight hours every day. You don’t get to stretch your legs or take breaks to release the tension in your back. It’d be nice to head to the gym on your lunch break, but you may not get enough time to go downtown. A 10-minute office workout could help you get your movement in.

You don’t have to compromise your health goals to keep your job. This easy workout can totally transform your day. These simple moves are easy to do at your desk, in a conference room or wherever you clock-in every morning.

1. Simple Leg Lifts

This is an easy exercise to hide under your desk. Push your seat back so you have enough room to extend your leg. Grip the bottom of your chair and straighten your leg, lifting it to a 90-degree angle with your toes pointed. Switch between legs for 15-20 lifts.

2. Quick Tricep Dips

If you have a chair without wheels, you can do some quick tricep dips between phone calls. Put your hands on the front of your chair, facing forward. Dip down until your legs form a 90-degree angle and lift yourself back up. 20-25 dips could count as a quick round, but you can repeat it if you have more time.

3. Speedy Desk Squats

Before you rush off to your next meeting, practice speedy desk squats. Push your chair as far back as you can and stand with your feet hip-width apart. Lower your hips as far down as you can without extending your knees over your toes. 25-30 squats will get your heart racing and strengthen your core muscles without breaking a sweat.

4. Seated Ab Rotations

While sitting in your seat, stabilize your chair and twist your torso to the left. As you do, cross your left knee up towards your right shoulder. Repeat while moving side to side, switching legs as you go. You can also focus on one side at a time, with 15 twists in each round.

5. Rear Leg Pulses

Hold onto your desk or a table and place your feet together. Bend one knee to draw your foot up to your rear. Flex your foot and raise your heel by a few inches, lowering it each time without putting your foot back down. Pulse each leg 20-30 times to work out your thighs and increase your average endurance without any equipment.

6. 90 Degree Wall Sits

You may have done this move in a gym class and it’s easy to recreate at work. While you’re in your cubicle or even a bathroom stall, put your back against the wall. Slide down until your knees are at a 90-degree angle. Freeze in that position for as long as you can, or at least 30 seconds. You’ll immediately feel muscles in your legs and your core working to hold you up.

7. Wall Push-Ups

It may seem awkward to get down on the floor for traditional pull-ups, so do wall push-ups the next time your schedule clears up. All you have to do is stand a foot or two out from the wall and lean in so you’re in a push-up position while standing. Push yourself away from the wall and back at least 30-40 times.

This exercise is a great way to modify the traditional push-up position so you can strengthen your arms with less weight on your muscles.

8. Rapid High Knees

Before you sit down in your chair, step back from your desk and draw each knee up, one at a time. Go as quickly as you can to perform rapid high knees without jumping. Repeat this movement for 30 seconds or until you’re out of breath.

Start With a 10-Minute Office Workout

The next time you’re dreading another day of sitting at your desk, try some of these new moves. Figure out which ones you enjoy and put them together to create a 10-minute office workout that will change your day and help you exercise more routinely. Make sure to plan a recovery day into your routine that will help your muscles repair themselves and be ready for your next workout in the future.

Updated on April 12, 2024

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