Sedentary Office Lifestyle, the Workplace Killer

by Emeka Ogbonnaya.

The workplace is notorious with acronyms and they use it to refer to anything from business entities, systems, regulation and so on. Take for instance, GDPR, MIFID II, ATM, MBA, etc., There’s one that has bothered me lately especially with my hardworking business ethics, SOL. SOL is not acronym for Summer Of Love or Suddenly Outta Luck but Sedentary Office Lifestyle.
You may be wondering what that means like I did when I found out. A sedentary lifestyle is defined as a type of lifestyle where an individual does not receive regular amounts of physical activity. It is where the level of physical activity is considered to be below level recommended by Center for Disease Control (CDC), which is an individual should participate in a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise, or 75 minutes of a more vigorous regimen. According to Wikipedia, a person living a sedentary lifestyle is often sitting or lying down while engaged in an activity like reading, socialising, or working for most of the day. A lifestyle I am unfortunately addicted to as an employee and an entrepreneur.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 60 to 85% of the population worldwide does not engage in enough activity. Making physical inactivity the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality. “According to Public Health England, prolonged sedentary working impacts the wellbeing of employees, irrespective of their personal level of physical fitness.
You wouldn’t think just of sitting around would be something that will kill you. The reality is, your sedentary office lifestyle might be so hazardous to your health it is literally killing.
Studies have highlighted the need for employers to acknowledge the role that sedentary office lifestyle have on health, requesting that they take bold actions to protect future enterprise productivity and performance. Employers must take a stand on the issue of sedentary office lifestyle, because they are likely to reap multiple benefits, for instance, enhanced workforce productivity, reduced absenteeism, and the ability to attract and retain talented human capital.
Employees and entrepreneurs on the other hand must figure out how to avoid letting the sedentary lifestyle negatively impact their health and wellness. Here are some of the things I have cultivated to ensure I avoid the health risks associated with sedentary office lifestyle.

Build physical activity in your everyday life

With all the known health risks associated with sitting all day at work, I resorted to move away from my desk daily for lunch, in addition to taking five-minute breaks every hour. My Fitbit as a reminder feature am thankful to for the 50mins reminder to take a walk. I enjoy taking the stairs a few floors up and down.

Leaving the office every often for a walk on the pathway or to the coffee shop has its rewards apart from the Latte and mochas.
There’s a trend, which I think is catching on across many organisations where employees form fitness clubs and go to the gym or for a run. Find one in your organisation and do something challenging outside the workplace. This is a trend employers must encourage for the obvious rewards from happy and healthy employees.


Take a break

“Take time each day to do something you enjoy that has nothing to do with work. For entrepreneurs, it can be especially hard to stop working and relax. However, it’s vital for your health so that you don’t end up over-stressed and burned out”. According to Marketwatch and Business Insider this week, some are finding innovative ways to counteract the negative impact of SOL. Zoique Wellness is one of the innovative companies attacking the problem head on with their wellness-inspired corporate team-building platform, which allows employees to reserve and work out exclusively at fitness studios around town.

Finally you wouldn’t want your conscientious efforts jeopardise your health and your life. You have to make it a point of duty to cultivate healthy habits in the workplace that will help you enjoy the salary you have worked so hard for.

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