One-Minute Workouts You Can Do at Work

One-minute bursts of strength building and cardio activities like walking lunges can tone your body and improve your health. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Got a minute? Get out of your chair and try these cardio and strength-building exercises designed for desk jockeys (via WebMD.com):

For cardio:

  • Do jumping jacks for one minute. Beginner? Try the low-impact version by raising your right arm and tapping your left toe to the side while keeping your right foot on the floor, then alternating sides.
  • For past football players, this drill will come screaming back to you. Run in place for 60 seconds, with high knees. Get those knees up! If you’re a beginner, march in place.
  • Simulate jumping rope for one minute. You can hop on alternate feet, or on both feet at once.
  • While seated, pump both arms over your head for 30 seconds, then rapidly tap your feet on the floor, football-drill style, for 30 seconds. Got 3-5 minutes? Repeat 3-5 times.
  • If there is a vacant office or conference room nearby, shadow box for one minute. Throw those punches!
  • Do walking lunges for one minute. Remember, on each lunge, your knee should not move further forward than the tip of your toe.
  • Walk the stairs for one minute. Taken them two at a time if you’d like a bigger challenge.
For strength building:
  • Do one minute of one-legged squats while holding onto a wall or table for support.
  • Stand with one leg straight and try to kick your buttocks with the other, then switch.
  • While sitting, lift one leg off the seat and extend it out straight, then hold for two seconds; then lower your foot, stop before it reaches the floor, and hold for two seconds. Switch; do each leg 15 times.
  • For a chest and shoulder strengthener, place both hands on your chair arms and slowly lift your bottom off the chair. Lower yourself back down but stop short of the seat, hold for a few seconds. Do 15 times.
  • To stretch your back and strengthen your biceps, place your hands on your desk. Hang on, then slowly push your chair back until your head is between your arms and you’re looking at the floor. Then slowly pull yourself back in. Repeat 15 times.
  • Do one minute of desk pushups. First, make sure your desk is solid enough to support you. Then, while standing, place your hands on the desk. Walk backward, then do push-ups against the desk. Repeat 15 times.
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