Working from home is a great way to save money on commuting costs and to have a more flexible schedule. However, it can be easy to let your work life spill over into your personal life and vice versa. This can lead to unhealthy habits, like sitting in front of the computer all day or working late into the night.
It's easy to get into the habit of snacking or eating unhealthy foods when you're working from home. Being stationary is also a major contributing factor to weight gain. There are a lot of difficult distractions when working from home as well, like the TV or the fridge.
To avoid these, it is important to set some boundaries between your work and personal life.
Here are some tips to help you stay healthy while working from home.
The Work-From-Home Transition
Having a regular routine is key to staying on track and prioritizing your health when working from home. There are a few things you can do to make the transition smoother.
Set up a dedicated workspace: This will help you to separate your work life from your personal life. If you don't have a spare room, try to create a space in your home that is just for work.
Get dressed for work: Getting ready for work each day will help to put you in the right mindset. It doesn't have to be anything fancy, just put on something that makes you feel professional.
Set office hours: Let your family and friends know what your work hours are so they can respect your time. This will also help you to stay focused when you're working.
Try to stick to a regular schedule: This will help your body to adjust to a new routine. Wake up and go to bed at the same time each day, and take regular breaks for meals and snacks throughout the day.
Diet and Exercise for Weight Loss
Diet and exercise are important for both your physical and mental health and play the largest role in successful weight loss. Prioritizing both can help to improve your mood, increase your energy levels, and reduce stress.
When you're working from home, it can be easy to let your diet and exercise routine slip.
You might not feel motivated to meal prep because you can just snack throughout the day, or might be tempted to skip your workout if you're not feeling motivated and don't have a reason to leave the house.
It's important to find a way to fit exercise into your day, even if it's just a short walk around the block. Exercise will help to boost your energy levels, improve your concentration, and help you feel motivated to eat healthy.
Many think that they will be able to eat healthier and move more if they're working from home, but this isn't always the case.
Has working from home impacted your health and weight loss efforts?
The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many to work from home, and many companies have kept the remote policy or created a hybrid environment. This change in your routine can impact your health in both positive and negative ways.
On the positive side, working from home can lead to a more active and healthy lifestyle. For example, you may take more breaks to walk around the house or go for a run during your lunch break. You may also have more time to curate a healthy diet and cook nutritious meals and snacks.
On the negative side, working from home can lead to more sedentary behavior. You may find yourself sitting in front of the computer for long periods of time or working late into the night. You may also be more likely to snack out of boredom or stress with your kitchen just steps away at all times.
When working from home, it is important to find a balance that works for you.
Sometimes, you have to push yourself to eat a healthy diet and stay active, even when you don’t feel like it. Other times, you need to give yourself a break and relax. This is where self-discovery and trial and error come in.
There is no one perfect way to work from home. It is important to find what works best for you and your lifestyle. This may take some time and experimentation. But, eventually, you will find a routine that helps you stay healthy and productive.
Is there a downside to working from home?
Statistically, those who work from home are more likely to experience neck and back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other health problems associated with sedentary behavior (1).
On the other hand, some are happier and less likely to quit their jobs, become sick, or feel burned out (2).
But physical health isn't the only thing at risk when you work from home. There are a few potential mental health dangers, too.
First, it can be harder to "turn off" work when you're at home. You may find yourself working longer hours or checking work email after hours because it's always right there. This can lead to burnout.
Second, working from home can be isolating. You may miss the social interaction that you get in an office setting. This can lead to feelings of loneliness or depression.
Third, there can be a lot of distractions at home, which can make it hard to focus on work. This can lead to decreased productivity.
Overall, working from home has some potential risks, but it can also be a great way to boost your productivity and improve your work-life balance. If you do work from home, make sure to take breaks, stay connected with others, and create a space that's conducive to concentration.
Weight Loss Tips For Working From Home
When it comes to losing weight, healthy weight loss should be the goal, not rapid weight loss. This will look different for every person, but generally, 1-2 lbs a week will help promote sustainable weight loss while preserving lean body mass.
Weight loss is a combination of prioritizing your diet as well as physical activity to achieve a slight but consistent calorie deficit.
These tips can help you avoid weight gain and support your weight loss and health efforts when working from home, all without sacrificing your productivity.
1. Start Your Day With a Glass of Water
Did you know that drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning can help you lose weight? That's because water helps to rehydrate you after sleep, starts your metabolism, and helps to control hunger.
This means that you'll be less likely to reach for unhealthy snacks throughout the day and more likely to stay on track with your weight loss goals.
2. Exercise Within the First Hour of Waking Up
Just like starting your day with a glass of water, getting some exercise in within the first hour of waking up can also help you lose weight. That's because exercise helps to jumpstart your metabolism and get your body moving (3).
You're also more likely to do it if it's part of your morning routine. Especially when working from home, it's easy to end up working later. You've also been home all day and don't want to have to turn down social time or dinner with your family to do your workout.
It's important to get some exercise every day, even if it's just a short walk. This will help you make healthier decisions for the rest of the day. Even just five minutes of body weight exercise or stretching can make a difference!
Bonus: Try getting some natural light exposure daily, especially earlier in the day. This can help promote better sleep and a healthy circadian rhythm, both of which are linked to weight regulation (4).
3. Meal Prep Or Try Meal Prep Delivery Services
Yes, even though you're working from home. Just because you're working from home doesn't mean you have to sacrifice healthy eating.
In fact, meal prepping can be a great way to make sure you're eating healthy, balanced meals and staying productive at work.
If you're not familiar with meal prepping, it simply means preparing your meals in advance. This can be as simple as prepping ingredients for a few days' worth of meals or cooking entire meals ahead of time.
There are a few benefits of meal prepping, especially when it comes to weight loss. First, it helps to control portion sizes. When you have a healthy meal already prepared, you're less likely to overeat or snack on unhealthy foods.
Second, meal prepping can help you save money. When you cook in bulk, you can often get discounts on groceries, and you'll save money by not eating out as often.
Finally, meal prepping can help you save time. When you have healthy meals already prepared, you won't have to spend time cooking or cleaning up after meals. This means you'll have more time to focus on work or enjoy your free time.
If you're not into having to do all the meal prepping yourself, Trifecta delivers perfectly balanced, healthy meals right to your door. With Trifecta, you can customize your meals to fit your dietary needs and goals, and all of the meals are ready to eat in just minutes.
4. Time-Block Your Day
Dedicating time to specific tasks as well as times for breaks can help promote favorable health outcomes.
Setting time to focus and using breaks for health-promoting activities such as physical activity, meditation, and eating healthy snacks in place of unhealthy activities can help you lose weight and reduce stress levels.
Stress reduction is a weight loss strategy in and of itself, as stress is often associated with impaired metabolism, depression, and obesity (5).
Time blocking can help to keep you on track and prevent you from getting sidetracked by things like social media, mindless snacking, or other distractions.
When you have a plan and dedicated breaks, it's easier to stay on task.
5. Don’t Eat At Your Desk
Mindless eating can result in overeating, which can lead to weight gain. If you're working from home, it can be tempting to just eat at your desk. However, this can lead to overeating or eating unhealthy snacks.
Instead, try to take a break to eat in another room. This will help you to be more mindful of what you're eating, and you're less likely to overeat. You can also try to schedule your meals so that you're not snacking all day long.
6. Get a Standing Desk
If you find yourself unable to take breaks and sitting at your desk all day, you may want to consider getting a standing desk. This will reduce your time being sedentary and slightly increase energy expenditure (6).
Bonus: A walking pad under your desk may also be helpful. This will allow you to walk in place while you work! These treadmill-like devices can help you burn more calories while you work and can also improve your mood, focus, and productivity (7).
7. Start Tracking
Calorie-counting apps like the Trifecta App can help you to better understand how many calories your body needs to lose weight based on your activity level, weight, and other factors.
In addition to calorie tracking, many apps also allow you to log and monitor your workouts and water intake, helping you to stay on track with your fitness and health goals.
By tracking your progress, you can better see how well your weight loss plan is working and make necessary adjustments along the way. This can help to keep you motivated and on track to reach your goals. The key is to find an app that you enjoy using, and that fits your lifestyle.
The Take Home
If maintaining a healthy weight has been a struggle for you while working from home, you're not alone.
Getting into a routine, drinking more water, meal prepping, time blocking, and increasing your physical activity are a few of the best strategies to promote weight loss and establish healthy habits.