It’s important to stay healthy if you work at home. Working at home has multiple benefits, but with it being easy to fall into bad habits. You might not be so worried about your appearance – no-one is going to see you so why not work in your jammies, and who will know if you don’t wash your hair and just pull it into a scrunchie? But, this attitude may also lead you to forgetting other good basics too – such as eating properly and exercising. Not having an office to go to every day is no excuse for not looking after yourself – here are some easy ways to stay healthy if you work at home.
1. Get Moving
One of the best ways to stay healthy if you work at home is to make sure you do not sit behind your desk for too long without moving. Make a point of getting up at least every two hours, but every hour is preferable. Stretch, shake your legs out, go for a walk around the block, do a few yoga moves or get the dog outside for a bit of fresh air. Not only will it be excellent for your cranky body, it will reboot your brain as well – and you will feel refreshed when you return to your desk.
2. Get the Right Chair
If you work at home, you are more than likely sitting for most of the day; whether you are an artist, writer, bookkeeper or programmer – you are sitting. So make sure you stay healthy working from home by investing in the right chair for your needs. If a Pilates ball works for you that is great, but you will still need some support for your back. Get a proper, good quality office chair that will support you and your spine as you sit all day.
3. Draw the Line between Home and Work
If you work from home, one of the biggest issues you are going to have is managing to separate home life from work life, and chances are you end up working very long hours. And if you don’t have boundaries between home and work you are going to feel like you never leave the office. Make sure that you try and create some structure in your work day – don’t eat in front of your computer, log off at a reasonable time and close the office door. This will help you stay healthy when working from home.
4. Enjoy the Perks
If you worked from an office, chances are that you would be staring out your office window every day at the beautiful day outside and wishing you could escape for a bit, feeling like you are trapped in your office all day. So while you are at home, instead of looking out the window, why not make use of your flexibility? Move your office outside under the tree, next to the pool or set up your desk next to the lake for the day. Get outside and enjoy the concept of a fresh air office instead of chugging away under the air con or heater all the time.
5. Keep a Fitness Routine
When you work at home one of the worst habits you can fall into is things like rolling out of bed in your slippers – late – to the ‘’office’’ and staying in your pajamas all day. Or sleeping until lunchtime and working until the wee hours. This means that any ideas of keeping fit or doing exercise have flown out of the window. Try to create some sort of routine to help you stay fit while you work from home. Get up at the same time every day and make an effort to go for a walk, do some yoga, take a swim or hit the gym before you start working.
6. Don’t Eat All Day
Just because you are at home is no excuse to embrace it as a chance to enjoy one long massive meal from beginning to end. Use the time you do have and the blessing of having your kitchen within arm’s length and prepare yourself proper home cooked meals and eat healthy. Fix a yummy salad for lunch instead of a stodgy sandwich. One of the best ways to keep healthy when working from home is to prepare your meals in advance, and then all you have to do is heat it up for lunch or dinner later.
7. Keep in Touch with the outside World
If you are a freelancer, chances are you don’t really interact with people much anymore – real time – unless they are part of the community you deal with on the other side of your computer. Make the effort to get out there and meet up with your friends, see people and go out for dinner before you become a complete hermit.
8. Put a Treadmill in the Office
A great way to keep healthy habits while working at home is to keep a treadmill or stationary bike in your office. This way at lunch time, you can get up and do a quick half an hour jog or walk, get the blood flowing and rethink your ideas before attacking that deadline. If the weather is rubbish or you live far away from a gym, the treadmill will be a good reminder to you to do some exercise.
9. Workout Uniform
When you get ready for work in the morning, why not automatically get dressed into your workout gear? You will feel like going for a walk or hitting the gym if you are already dressed for it. And part of the perks of working from home means that you don’t need to dress up for corporate meetings and you can be comfortable and ready to go at the same time.
10. Get Rid of the Junk Food
You need cravings-busters on hand. Go through your pantry and chuck out all those easy to munch comfort food snacks if you want to stay healthy while working at home. Get rid of all the muffins, biscuits, popcorn, instant meals, cheese and crackers and crisps and replace them with nuts, dried fruit, rye crackers and low fat organic muesli for go-to energy boost snacks instead.
Working from home can put lots of temptations in your way you probably never even considered when you made the decision to not work in an office or commercial environment. It also, however, should make looking after yourself easier as long as you employ the ways to stay healthy while you work at home. Are you a home worker? Do you look after yourself or are you in the trap of “taking it easy”?