I’m not an exercise buff by any means — the most I do is yoga three times a week, and that’s when I’m REALLY disciplined about it. Most of the time my schedule (working from home + parenting a small child = I’m all over the place) makes regular yoga attendance a challenge. Despite the challenges, I still like activity — even while I’m sitting at my desk for a few hours. To combat the overall feeling of ick that I generally get, I created this series of small exercises to do to keep my circulation up and spirit happy.
You only need hand weights (I use two pound ones) and a 2×3 foot area you can sit and stand in — everything else is on you. The exercises are pretty simple — think lunges, arm lifts, and crunches.
Here’s what I do:
Arm Lifts: 3 minutes
I do three sets of arm lifts on each arm. First, I pick up a weight, hold my arm straight in front of me with my thumb facing up. Then I bring my arm toward my face thirty times. In the next lift I hold my arm out (still holding the weight) with my palm facing down and bring my arm into my chest thirty times. In the final lift I hold my arm over my head, bend it at the elbow behind my head, and bring it back up straight — thirty times. Then I repeat with the other arm!
Lunges: 2 minutes
I do three kinds of lunges as well. The first is a basic lunge, which I do 30 times on each leg:
The second is a side lunge, which I do 15 times on each leg:
The third is really a squat, but still kind of lunge-y (I do these 30 times as well):
Crunches: 1 minute
I like tuck crunches, and I try to do them for sixty seconds. I don’t always succeed:
Again: the whole point of this isn’t to become buff or even toned — I have no idea if I’m doing much more than just giving myself a boost a couple of times a day. All of the exercises are easy to do in what I’m usually wearing while working (jeans and a shirt). I try to do each of these at least twice, with a goal of doing them four times in a four hour period. They take next to no time, but I always feel a little more ready to approach a problem or work on a piece after I’m finished.
And if you don’t like these ideas… you can always do what my husband does. IF you happen to have a 30 pound kid handy: