Your job is crucial to your savings account’s bottom line, but probably not so friendly to the bottom you sit on for eight hours each workday. Plus, the typical office is a veritable minefield of temptation: vending machines with tasty (and fattening) snacks, birthday celebrations complete with cake, meetings that start with donuts, coworkers who keep candy at their desks or encourage you to hit the nearby fast food joint at lunchtime. It’s enough to sabotage anyone’s weight loss efforts. But don’t give up. There are plenty of ways to stick to your diet, stay healthy, get a little exercise, and even lose weight while on the job.
Brown Bag It
One of the easiest ways to fight the battle of the bulge is to bring your lunch to work each day. Forget about gulping down a fast-food meal at your desk, or hitting up the taco truck at lunchtime. Take a few minutes to bag a healthy meal before going to bed, and all you’ll have to do is grab it on your way out each morning.
Beat the Afternoon Slump
When the 3:00 slump hits, it’s hard to resist the call of the vending machines and the sugary, fat-filled treats they contain. Make it easy to perk yourself up while sticking to your diet plan by stocking several choices of healthy snacks in your desk. There are lots of options, including:
• Nuts and nut butters
• Sturdy fresh fruit like apples, pears, bananas and oranges
• Whole wheat crackers like Triscuits
• Packets of instant oatmeal (but watch the sugar content)
• Bagged popcorn
• Dried fruit (but again, watch out for added sugar)
• Single-serve containers of non-sweetened applesauce
• Turkey jerky
Take the Stairs
It’s usually easy to work some exercise into your workday. Forget the elevator; take the stairs as often as possible. Walk to your coworker’s cubicle instead of sending an email. Circle the office building after a restroom break. Park at the far end of the parking lot instead of looking for the closest spot. Gather up a gang of coworkers who are also looking to lose weight quickly, and walk together each day at lunchtime.
Power Up Your Commute
If you live within a few miles of your workplace, can you ride a bicycle instead of driving? Even pedaling once or twice each week will power through a hefty number of calories. If you live within a mile of your office, walk whenever the weather permits. Or if you take the bus, instead of heading to the nearest stop, walk to one that’s further down the route.