Lunch Hour Workout
It is so easy to stay sitting at our desks during our lunch breaks. The never-ending stream of emails and stress associated with sitting behind a computer can leave us feeling crabby and drained. Research shows that a short walk during lunch break is all it takes to perk us up.
A study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports took 56 physically inactive adults, who received less that 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week on a 30-minute walk during lunchtime for 3 days a week for 10 weeks. The participants could walk at whatever speed and intensity they wanted. The researchers sent text message questionnaires to the participants about their work, stress, and nervousness. The participants answered the same questions during morning, before the lunchtime walk, and again in the afternoon. Sometimes they were sent the same messages on days that they didn’t walk allowing researchers to compare walked days to non-walk days.
The result: going for a walk during lunchtime makes people more enthusiastic, less fatigued, and less stressed. The participants also felt better on days they walked compared to the days that they didn’t.
Bottom line – taking just 30 minutes to get some exercise is going to make the workday go by much faster.
Thøgersen‐Ntoumani C, Loughren EA, Kinnafick FE, Taylor IM, Duda JL, Fox KR. Changes in work affect in response to lunchtime walking in previously physically inactive employees: A randomized trial. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports. 2015 Dec;25(6):778-87.