The 9 to 5 desk job can be dangerous for your health—physically and mentally. Why? Here’s 5 reasons:

Inactivity:
Being inactive for up to8+ hours each weekday limits your body’s ability to metabolize, combat illness, circulate blood efficiently, and maintain and build muscle strength.

Unhealthy In-Office Food:
Donuts, pastries or other high-carb-high-fat treats often offered in cafeterias or during office meetings. Such food options makes eating healthy merely impossible. The donuts smell and look delicious and you’re hungry because maybe you didn’t make time for breakfast or simply have a sudden sugar craving. As your coworkers all chow and sip vigorously, you, too, figure, why not!

Desk Lunches:
If sitting at your desk for up to 8+ hours a day isn’t bad enough, Americans regularly remain at their desks even while eating lunch. If you forget to pack a lunch, which typically is healthier, you order in or pick up from nearby fast food restaurant chains, like Jimmy John’s or Chik-fil-A, because it is convenient, economic and perhaps tasty. But, remember, such food options are very unhealthy.

Stress:
The stress associated with a career is taxing. You worry about performing well to either keep your job, guarantee a promotion in the upcoming months, or meet your boss’ expectations and deadlines. When stressed and consumed by work, most people reach for quick snacks that are often unwholesome. When overwhelmed by deadlines, bills, and employee reviews, most people make no time for exercise.

Stale Air:
Clean, fresh air fills your lungs and circulates your blood more readily, allowing your brain and body to function at its peak levels. However, the atmosphere in an office does not compare to that of nature; therefore, an 8+ hour work day stunts the body’s functionalities because you are not feeding your blood fresh oxygen.

Solution:
Incorporating exercise, routine breaks to walk outside for fresh air, and nutritious packed lunches and snacks can immensely kickstart a healthier lifestyle. Suggest serving apples and almonds and the like as opposed to pastries during staff meetings. Suggest walking with co-workers to a nearby farmers market for lunch. Commit yourself to being aware of these 5 hazards of an office job and to combating these hazards, step by step.

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The Sitting Disease: The Consequence of a Sedentary Lifestyle

After reading all about the harmful effects of excessive sitting and a sedentary lifestyle, this post is being written standing up!  But chances are, you’re reading this – sitting down. Right?

Go on, try taking a few deep breaths and move your arms around a bit while you’re reading.  I’ll bet you’ll feel much better when you’re finished. I’d even venture to guess that in the future, you’ll think about being more active while sitting, once you learn more about the sitting disease that could be putting your health at risk…

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Relieve Stress by Keeping Active Throughout the Work Day

Have you ever spent endless hours at your desk, mulling over a contract, or a lesson plan, or a closing argument, or which stocks in which to invest? As each hour passes, your body hunches more, your eyes get droopier, your concentration wavers, your patience becomes void. The flickering harsh lights of the office floor act as a reminder of your imposing deadline, causing more stress and angst.

Pile on the fact that you may be missing your child’s parent-teacher conference, or the cancer benefit event, or your weekly spinning class. Your mind screams for relief. The stress boils over with nowhere to spill…because you must remain professional.

Physical activity releases endorphins, your brain’s feel-good neurotransmitters. When released into your blood stream, endorphins lighten your mood, and help you feel more balanced and overall happier. No matter if you are running, swimming, playing basketball, holding yoga poses, walking to lunch instead of driving, or using bands or free weights to do bicep curls, the sheer act of physical movement produces this chemical reaction. Use this knowledge to your benefit: keeping active throughout the work day is imperative to stay productive and creative.

Your metabolism will kick up, encouraging you to eat a healthy meal; your dedication to exercise at your desk will inspire your co-workers to do the same, positively affecting the work atmosphere; you will no longer feel so sluggish, but instead rejuvenated and de-stressed. Your work will shine.

In today’s world, many Americans value appearance and health. Therefore, keeping up with your physical body’s needs through exercise will limit your level of stress. People are infamous for making excuses why they do not have time to exercise and eat properly. Empower yourself to stay “on track” and exercise.

Improve your Posture at Work

Sitting for 8-10 hours a day can really wreck havoc on your body. It’s important to be mindful of how you can improve your posture at work to prevent chronic injuries and to keep your body in great shape.
Office Gym has created a posture workshop to give you and your co-workers all the information you need to keep your spine tall and strong. You will learn stretches you can do at your desk to reduce tension in your neck and shoulders. There will also be a demonstration on how you can use the Office Gym fitness device to strengthen the posture muscles.
You will learn how to prevent the following posture issues:
Rounded Shoulders
Forward Neck
Hunched Back
You will also learn a 5 minute stretch series that you can use throughout your day to improve your posture.
If you work in Southern California, you can have the Office Team to come to your office and provide an hour long posture workshop. Contact info@officegym.com for more details.

How Reps and Sets Will Elevate You in your Workout and your Work Place !

Have you ever watched someone intensely lift weights, grunting, sweat dripping from his forehead, muscles bulging, veins popping as if his body might just give out? Believe it or not, there is reason behind his insanity. Well, you too can obtain the same benefits with a “sane” workout routine that fits right into your work place and schedule.

repssetsIncluding reps and sets in your workout routine will be critical to facilitate better muscle growth and stability. In fact, regular workouts with reps and sets will improve bodily function, including mood, metabolism, appetite, and your effectiveness in the work place.

There is no “perfect” set to rep ration. Those in the health and fitness fields routinely debate this issue. The best thing is to determine for yourself, through trial and error, what works for and pushes your body to improve. Overtime, increasing weight intensity and number of reps gradually is a more healthy and natural approach that will be right for your body and fitness level.

The purpose of repeating an exercise is to work a specific muscle until the muscle fibers eventually tear and reach exhaustion/failure. As you incorporate higher reps and/or greater resistance, you are essentially training your muscles to work harder and build endurance. Tearing muscle fibers encourages greater blood flow to that tissue to repair and become stronger. Don’t forget to rest between sets as this will allow your body time to re-oxygenate your muscles.

When using OfficeGYM we recommend that you gradually, every couple of weeks, increase your reps for each exercise. And remember, not only will your serotonin levels go up with increased reps and sets, but also an increased amount of tryptophan in the brain will also result; creating a more efficient and healthier you that is faster, smarter, and hotter at work!

Are you drinking enough water?

H2OWe all know that water is essential to life. It helps regulate our body temperature, lubricates our joints and carriers nutrients between our major organs and flushes out the waste. In biology we learned that the body is comprised of approximately 65% water.  Did you know your brain is 73% water?<

Hydration is crucial for optimal brain (and body) function.

Studies have shown that a 1 to 2% reduction in body weight over the day can be a sign of mild dehydration that is significant enough to reduce mental performance (e.g., concentration, alertness, short-term memory) and overall productivity.

That’s why in addition to getting regular exercise, to perform your best at work you need to be sure you are adequately hydrated.

How much fluid should you be drinking each day?

Most scientific experts recommend on average, an intake of fluid and food equal to:

  • Men:  85 ounces or 2.5 liters
  • Women:  64 ounces or 2 liters

That seems a bit low – particularly if you work-out. An easy calculation is to plan to drink at least half your body weight in fluid ounces.  So if you weigh 160 pounds, you should take-in at least 80 ounces (2.365 liters) of fluid per day.

You can also use this  HYDRATION CALCULATOR from About.com that factors in time spent exercising and get a closer estimate.

TIP #1: Drink plenty of water.  But you can mix-it-up a little with other beverages like, herbal teas, coffee, low-sodium broth, flavored water (with squeezed lemon – it’s great for weight loss), 100% fruit juice and milk.

TIP #2: Start your day off right. Drink 20 ounces of cold water when you first wake up to get your metabolism revved-up and detoxify.

So, stay on top of your game at work by slipping in a few short workouts with the OfficeGym throughout the day and remember to hydrate!

“Make physical activity part of your everyday”

To your health,
Your friends at OfficeGym

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Source
1 Popkin BM et al. (2010). Water, hydration and health. Nutr Rev 68(8): 439-58.
About.com. Hydration Calculator: http://nutrition.about.com/library/blwatercalculator.htm

Dave, Adam. (2013). The Benefits of Drinking Water Just After Waking Up.http://www.livestrong.com/article/446197-the-benefits-of-drinking-water-just-after-waking-up/

Natural Hydration Council. FAQs on Hydration. http://www.naturalhydrationcouncil.org.uk/hydration-facts/faqs-on-hydration/

Do You Know Your Resting Metabolic Rate (BMR)?

On any given day, most of us could provide a fairly accurate estimate of the balance we have in our bank account.  We keep track of our deposits and withdrawals to ensure we maintain a ‘healthy’ bank account.

How many of us know how many calories we burn each day (on average)?  Think of your daily calories as deposits and activity as withdrawals from your fitness bank account.  Knowing how many calories you burn at rest – can serve as the benchmark for how many calories you can consume and how active you need to be each day to maintain a healthy weight.  This calculation is called your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) or Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR).

Of course, there are several factors that can influence your BMR – height, current weight, gender, age, activity level, genetics, health issues, etc.  But to get some idea of where you are currently here’s one of many simple formulas to calculate your BMR:

Guys:
(Multiply your weight x  4.5)+(your height in inches x 16) – (multiply your age x 5) + 5

Here’s an example of a 175 lb., 6 ft. tall, 30-year-old male:
(175 lbs x 4.5 =  787.50)+(72 inches x 16 = 1152)-(30 x 5 = 150) – 5

787.50 + 1152 – 150 – 5 =  BMR – 1,784.5

Gals:
(Multiply your weight x  4.5)+(your height in inches x 16) – (multiply your age x 5) – 161

Here’s an example of a 125 lb., 5 ft. 5 in. tall, 30-year-old female:
(125 lbs x 4.5 =  562.5)+(65 inches x 16 = 1040)-(3 x 5 = 150) – 161

562.50 + 1040 – 150 – 161 =  BMR –  1,291.5

Or, if it’s easier, use this handy BMR calculator (Results will vary slightly)

Either way, it’s an important number for you to know so you can determine how many calories you can consume and how much activity you need to incorporate into your everyday.

If your goal is to lose weight (like many of us) you need to create a calorie deficit, which can be done by:

  • Eating fewer calories
  • Increasing your activity so you burn more calories
  • Or better yet, doing BOTH

It is estimated that a sedentary job such as sitting at a desk burns approximately 46 calories per hour.  If the average American works 1790 hours annually that’s 82,340 calories burned per year, a meager 225 calories per day.  That’s not enough.

Using the examples above:

  • Our 30-year-old male could consume approximately 2,010 calories and maintain his weight at 175.
  • Our 30-year-old female could consume approximately 1,517 calories and maintain her weight at 125.

Doesn’t sound like very many calories, does it?  Once you do your own calculations, you will know your approximate BMR and can estimate how many calories you can consume and how much activity you need to incorporate into your daily routine to maintain a healthy fitness bank account.

If you’re spot on…congratulations!  If you’ve got work to do but just can’t find the time, one way to increase your activity and calorie burn is to do it while you work  – using the OfficeGYM.

Resistance exercises using bands can burn as much as 200 – 300 calories per hour.   So, why not find out how many calories you have to work with by calculating your BMR. Then adjust your calorie intake accordingly and let OfficeGym help you,

“Make regular physical activity part of your everyday ”

Order OfficeGym Today!

Only $129.99 (plus s&h in US and Canada)

To your health!

SOURCES:
Mifflin-St Joer. Basal Metabolic Rate: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basal_metabolic_rate

Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2005: http://www.health.gov/dietaryguidelines/dga2005/document/

Kastner, Jamie. How to use Resistance Bands and How Many Calories Do You Burn: http://www.livestrong.com/article/365713-how-to-use-resistance-bands-and-how-many-calories-do-you-burn/

OfficeGym Unveils Fitness Device Designed to Counter Health Risks Associated with a Sedentary Lifestyle

Opens US Orders with inaugural office in California 

DANA POINT, CA–(August 20, 2013)—OfficeGym, a manufacturer of revolutionary lifestyle and fitness devices, today debuted its flagship product in the US, a device that transforms the backrest of any chair into a versatile workout station. OfficeGym’s compact training system, designed for the work place and home, allows users to take advantage of the dozens of mini-breaks that are taken throughout the day, and encourages them to slip in in a simple workout. With more than 25 movements for 10 muscle groups, it delivers a toning workout for the entire body.

“OfficeGym started from our desire to break up the monotony of sitting in an office all day,” said Daniel Montazem, co-Founder of OfficeGym. “We’ve introduced a product that can be used as preventative measure in curbing the new epidemic of sitting.”

“Studies show that our desk jobs represent a key culprit behind society’s expanding waistlines. The goal of our product is simple. Create a work environment that fosters a sense of well-being; burns calories while you sit; and increases productivity,” explained Giovanni Bonotto, co-founder of OfficeGym. “OfficeGym is not meant to be a substitute, rather it should be used to supplement other forms of physical activities. Our product was designed with a focus on physical health and wellness across all ages.”

The company also announced plans to run Direct Response TV ads to help build the brand in the US.  The commercials will appear on national cable beginning in the fall of 2013.  OfficeGym has manufactured its product in Germany and Italy since 2011 and is available for sale and distribution in the US, Canada and the European Union.

“We are excited about our expansion into the US and by the opportunity to offer a product which seeks to mitigate the health risks associated with a sedentary lifestyle,” said Bonotto.  “Building on our successful expansion in Europe over the last 12 months, OfficeGym continues to gain momentum in new markets around the world.  We look forward to providing US consumers with a consistently exceptional product and service experience.”

To request additional information on OfficeGym please email press@officegym.com. For more information on OfficeGym please visit www.officegym.com.

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Benefits of Resistance Training: Elastic Bands vs. Weight Lifting

resistance-training_man-womanNo longer is a basic cardio workout, such as swimming, walking, or biking, enough to keep you healthy and strong as you age. Medical research has shown resistance training is vital to building bone density, controlling your weight (because more muscle mass means more calories burned), managing chronic health conditions (such as diabetes), and improving your balance, focus, and stamina.

Resistance training refers to using an opposing force to exercise your muscles. This opposing force can either be through the use of resistance tubes or weights. Resistance tubes, more commonly known as resistance bands, are of an elastic and flimsy material that, when pulled taut, engage your muscles and break down muscle fibers, just as weights do. Free weights (commonly made of case iron or steel, and sometimes coated with vinyl) or weight machines are two forms of weight lifting equipment used to add resistance.

These types of training equipment share similarities: both allow for a free range of motion at varying speeds, while also allowing you to increase the amount of resistance as your strength progresses. However, because lifting weights must be done along the vertical plane in order to work your muscles, resistance bands have an added benefit because you can also move along the horizontal plane. This wider range of motion more closely imitates everyday, functional activities.

The OfficeGym is a resistance training device designed to build strength and endurance for every day health. The unit’s dual velcro straps attach to the backrest of any chair and the elastic bands and pulley system provide resistance as you perform traditional weightlifting movements. The locking system lets you flip the handle tubes in different positions, allowing a complete range of resistance exercises.

No one method of resistance training is greater than the other. As long as your muscles are contracting against external resistance—whether it’s weights, machines, or resistance tubing, the exercises will work to help you build strength and tone.
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OfficeGym: Slip in a workout during your work day

If you’re like most people, when you decide to improve your health and fitness, you immediately start to think about putting together a gym workout routine. You may also feel guilty that as soon as you leave work each day, rather than hitting the gym, you’re running errands, or  you head home to wind down and relax on the couch.

At the same time, you may be finding that the old wives tale of the gym solving all of your problems may not be netting you the results you want. More people are beginning to realize that their desk job could actually be the biggest threat to their overall health.

The Health Impact Of Extended Sitting

The first and most critical thing to know is the danger of sitting for extended periods of time. The Archives Of Internal Medicine published a study that noted those individuals who had the most prolonged sitting periods on a regular basis demonstrated the highest mortality rates. Amongst those individuals that that sat for 11 or more hours per day, their mortality was almost 50% higher than those that sat for only 4-8 hours per day. In addition, those numbers were neither impacted by a formal exercise program. If you’re sitting for that extended period, you will still be at an increased risk regardless of whether or not you go to the gym.

Other Negative Impacts 

Not only is mortality rate increased, but prolonged sitting also negatively affects your posture. Over time, your back muscles will become weaker and without conscious effort to maintain proper posture, a hunched back appearance may result.

Furthermore, extended sitting will also cause the metabolic rate to decline significantly, which can lead to an increased risk of body fat gain.

Finally, if you remain sitting and motionless for a prolonged period of time, your blood flow may become restricted, meaning fewer nutrients and oxygen get delivered to the organs and brain. This causes muscles and tendons to tighten and stiffen.

The Solution

The key to removing these threats to your health and fitness level is to focus on short, consistent bits of activity throughout the day. While one long workout is definitely great, it’s even better if you can do periodic bursts of activity from both a health and weight loss standpoint.

One very excellent tool that makes this activity program attainable is the OfficeGYM. The device straps easily to the back of your office chair and then allows you to perform a wide variety of different exercises to challenge your body’s various muscles.

Whether you want to firm your shoulders, biceps, abs and legs, or prevent back pain due to bad posture, the OfficeGYM can assist you. An exercise guide is provided that outlines suggested exercises, all of which you can do without leaving your desk.

If you are a busy individual, the OfficeGYM, will help you to maximize your time. No longer will you have to worry about dedicating hours each week to public gym workouts. Instead, you can get fit, minute by minute, right in the comfort of your personal office chair.

Two to three minutes, five to eight times per day is all it takes to see remarkable results to both your fitness and health levels. Next time, instead of rethinking your gym workouts, consider what you’re doing during the course of your day. Make adjustments, slip in moments of activity, and watch your body change for the better!

References:
Chey, T. et al. (2012). Sitting time and all-cause mortality risk in 222 497 Australian adults. Archives Of Internal Medicine.  March 26; 172(6):494-500.