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Quick Office Workouts: Exercises At Your Desk To Lose Weight

A major drawback to that well-paying office job is the fact that those long days of sitting are likely to have a murderous effect on your overall health and fitness. Though some major corporations provide gymnasiums for their employees most do not. Consequently, staying fit is something you are going to have to provide for by yourself.

I have designed some office workouts to keep you fit during your breaks.

Recommended workout Video:


Related: Best Small Exercise Equipment for the Office

Quick Exercises You Can Do at the Office

More than likely your employer object to you bringing a yoga mat, hand weights, and a Pilates ball into your office so you can get your workout during the day. Unless you have an awesome boss, you will just have to use exercise equipment that is already available to you. These quick workouts for the office will help keep you toned and get your blood flowing for better circulation as well.

The great thing is that you can do a few at a time throughout the day to help break up the monotony of sitting at your desk and staring at your computer all day.

Skip the Elevator, Take the Stairs

This one is a rather obvious one in multi-story buildings. Sure, trudging up 35 floors first thing in the morning might not appeal to you, but you can get off the elevator 8 to 10 floors below the floor where you work in order to take advantage of this exercise.

Targeted Muscles:
Your hips, thighs, and glutes will get the most out of this exercise, but it can also benefit your calves.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: Stand in front of the stairway 8 to 10 floors below the floor where you work.
  • Step up onto the first step with right foot and raise your left arm.
  • For the next step, step with your left foot and raise your right arm.
  • Continue alternating feet on each step until you reach the floor where you work.

Quick Tips
Extending up onto your tiptoes on each step will work your calf muscles. If you do these, be sure that you are wearing shoes that won’t slip.

Seated Bicycle Crunches

Dropping to the floor of your office and ripping off 50 sit-ups or crunches might be okay in some offices, but for those who work in a more conservative setting, these seated bicycle crunches might be a better option.

Targeted Muscles:
The main muscles targeted are the upper abs.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: Sit down in a sturdy chair and lean back into the seat with your hands holding the chair for stability.
  • Lift both legs, bending your knees up to your chest.
  • Straighten your right leg, and then bring it back toward your chest. In the same movement, straighten your left leg.
  • Alternate pumping your legs like riding a bicycle 30 times each to complete a set.

Quick Tips
If your chair has wheels, make sure that it is backed up against a wall, your desk or some stable surface to keep it from rolling backward or tipping over.

Seated Calf Raises

A less conspicuous exercise that will do wonders for working out your calf muscles can also be done while sitting in your office chair.

Targeted Muscles:
The soleus muscle, which is the longer calf muscle running underneath the bulkier one, which helps to make your tones legs look longer and slimmer.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: Sit forward in your chair with your feet flat on your chair and your thighs and calves at a 90-degree angle. Place your palms on your knees and lean forward so that your upper body weight is pressing down on your knees.
  • Apply resistance with your hands while lifting your heels off of the floor until your toes are fully extended.
  • Resist against your hands as you push your heels back down to the floor with your hands to complete a rep.
  • Repeat this 15 to 20 to complete a set.

Quick Tips
You will get the most out of this exercise if you do it slowly and deliberately rather than bouncing up and down.

Seated Leg Extensions

You’ve worked the abs and calves while still sitting in your chair, so why not get some work in for your thighs as well? Seated leg extension can be done in your office chair as well.

Targeted Muscles:
This exercise targets your quadriceps or quad muscles.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: Sit back in your chair with the backs of your knees at the front edge of the chair, your feet together and flat on the floor, and your hands on the arms of the chair for stability.
  • Point your toes and raise both legs until they are straight out in front of you.
  • Bend your knees and lower your legs back down to the floor, only touching the tips of your toes before starting the next rep.
  • Repeat this motion 25 to 30 times to complete a set.

Quick Tips
Ankle weights can be used to add a little weight to this exercise or you can do them one leg at a time using a resistance band with one end wrapped around your ankle and the other attached to the chair. This exercise can be simulated by walking up the stairs backward as well.

Chair Squats

Keeping the tuck in your behind and your thighs toned while you are at work can also be accomplished from your office chair by doing chair squats.

Targeted Muscles:
This is a great exercise for glutes, quads, and hamstrings.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: Sit as far forward as you can on a stable chair in order to position your feet and then stand up with your feet shoulder width apart and your arms at your sides.
  • Lower your rear end toward the edge of the chair while extending your arms straight out in front of you.
  • As soon as your behind brushes the edge of the seat, flex your core muscles, glutes, and thighs to rise back up into the standing position while bringing your arms back to your sides to complete a rep.
  • Repeat this series of motions 15 to 20 times to complete a set.

Quick Tips
If your chair has wheels, make certain that it is stabilized against a wall or your desk so it doesn’t roll out from under you while you are working out.

Chair Tricep Dips

If toned arms are a concern that you have, then you can make use of chair tricep dips to give the back of your arms a workout as well.

Targeted Muscles:
Your tricep muscles are the target of this exercise.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: After doing squats sit back on the edge of the chair and place your hands directly below your shoulders on the chair. Keeping your thighs and calves at a 90-degree angle slide forward until your behind is no longer resting on the chair.
  • Bend your elbows and lower your rear toward the floor until your upper arms and forearms are at a 90-degree angle.
  • Press upward until your arms are straight and you are back to your original position to complete a rep.
  • Repeat this series of motions 12 to 15 times to complete a set.

Quick Tips
You need to do these in a deliberate way, concentrating on using your arms and avoid using momentum and your legs to bounce up and down.

Desk Pushups

Are you concerned about toning your upper body as well? You could drop and do 20 in that short skirt or you could accomplish similar results with desk pushups.

Targeted Muscles:
This exercise targets your shoulders, chest and upper arms.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: Place your palms shoulder-width apart on the edge of the desk, walk your feet backward until your body forms a 45-degree angle with the floor, and put your feet together.
  • Bend your arms and lower your chest between your hands toward the edge of the desk.
  • Press upward until your arms are fully extended again to complete a rep.
  • Repeat this series of motions 15 to 20 times to complete a set.

Quick Tips
Be sure to keep your back, hips, and legs in a straight line and don’t allow your hips to sag in order to get the most out of this exercise. You can also work your triceps by change positions and facing away from the desk to do tricep dips as well.

Arm Circles

Fatigue in the neck, shoulders, and back are a major drawback of sitting at a desk and working at a computer all day. Besides helping to relieve that fatigue, arm circles can also help strengthen and tone shoulder muscles.

Targeted Muscles:
Your shoulders are the targeted muscles in this exercise.

How You Do It

  • Starting Position: Stand with your feet shoulder width and your arms at your sides. Extend your arms straight up from your sides so your body forms a tee.
  • Rotate your arms forward in a circular motion, forming a circle that has a diameter of about 12 to 15 inches.
  • Continue circling your arms forward for about 10 to 15 seconds and then reverse the direction of the circles for another 10 to 15 seconds.
  • Move your arms so that they are straight in front of your shoulders and begin to circle your hands inward in smaller circles of about 6 to 8 inches in diameter for 10 to 15 seconds.
  • Reverse the motion, circling your arms outward for 10 to 15 seconds.
  • Bring your arms back down to your sides to complete a rep.
  • Repeat this series 3 to 5 times to complete a set.

Quick Tips
Once you have built up some strength, you can add some weight to this exercise by holding a couple of books, some small hand weights or using ankle weights on your wrists.

Related: 8 Simple Beginner Stair Climbing Exercises at Home or Work