Are your business meetings making you fat?
Does your job involve using a computer? Most business women would reply yes, it is highly unlikely that in this day and age that you don’t use a computer to run your business. What about meetings, do you attend many meetings each week? What about eating and drinking, does your work keep you eating on the go and drinking lots of coffee and little water? Do you work from home? Do you drive to your workplace? Do you eat bananas? Scrap that last one… unless you eat more than 10 a day. If you answered yes to any of the above, your business may be the cause of poor health and your meetings may even be making you fat :/
Sitting for too long can double your type II Diabetes risk, impact your metabolism, affect your sleep and put you at a greater risk of depression and cancer. According to a study published in the journal Circulation: Heart Failure, men who sit for five hours or more a day have a 34% increased risk of heart failure compared to their chair-avoiding counterparts — no matter how much they exercise. Wow, so all those men you see in the gym lifting weights and look ever so healthy could be doing more damage than they realise whilst at work just by sitting at their desk. The same applies to women of course but this study just happened to be done on men.
Standing burns 40% more calories than sitting!
Take the plunge — here are some tips to fat free business:
Who said that you had to sit when you have a meeting? Why not go for a walk when possible. People offer opinions more freely and are far more creative when walking. Netwalking is also a great way to network with other businesses rather than sitting down to a breakfast event, then a lunch meeting and to end the day off a nice champagne and canapé event… Rather, ask as many people as possible to go for a walk with you. Women’s Business Club are launching Netwalking events all over the country — watch this space.
- Stand Up Meetings and Sit Down Lunches
New research shows that clearing the chairs from your meeting rooms leads to more productive and creative meetings. Turn traditional meetings into standing meetings and not only find a better creative flow to your meetings but also ditch the nasty health effects caused by sitting down for too long. Asking your team to stand for a meeting will reduce your meeting times significantly, in some cases cutting your meeting times in half and offering better results too. On the other hand, you need to sit down and eat your lunch. Take at least 20 minutes to sit down and eat a meal. You are more likely to put on weight by rushing your lunch or eating on the go, which leads me to my next point…
- Snack Boxes, Protein Shakes and Water
Skipping meals or eating on the go are bad habits that busy business women get into. The American Journal of Epidemiology found that people who skipped breakfast were 4.5 times more likely to be obese. Keep snack boxes and protein shakes handy so that you don’t skip meals or eat junk on the go. Eating small portions of nutritious food throughout the day as well as at least 8 glasses of water, will keep your waste-line trim and your energy levels up. Snack boxes can consist of nuts, fruit, rice cakes, etc and there are plenty of delicious protein shake recipes on the internet that you could whip up before running out the door to a meeting.
- Stand up desks and Proper Sleep
Stand up, sit down, stand up and lie down! Whew it may seem like a lot of mixed messages here but it is really important to do the right activity at the right time or else you are likely to get fat and unhealthy! Oops sorry, I have been watching too much Dr House lately and caught some of his bluntness but on a serious note — you really do need to take these things seriously as you only have one life and one body to live it in. Ergonomics expert Alan Hedge says, “We need to think of sitting like driving, take a break regularly.” Stand up desks offer a great opportunity to get your work done without procrastinating — you are unlikely to waste time while standing up. Also, it is a great opportunity to work on your posture giving you a nice flat stomach and losing the Quasimodo hunch. You could do calf lifts, sway side to side or walk away from the desk from time to time to think more clearly. The opportunities are endless and sitting is so last year — do you still sit at your desk? Sleeping though, needs to be done well and although I am not going to go into that now I would just like to mention that sleep also has a significant impact on our health and weight so please do prioritise a good night’s sleep because no amount of netwalking or standing desks can make up for a lack of sleep.
There is so much more to say and we will be hearing more regularly about fitness and the workplace with posts and events from our new member partner, Active Gloucestershire, who have partnered with the Women’s Business Club to create Active Business Women.