50 Habits of Thin People: Working Day Do’s
Posted by Katie Ostoich on April 26, 2012 at 9:54 AM
I’m back with the second set of daily habits of thin people (yesterday we talked about ways to start your morning off on the right foot). These 18 tricks are all about how to maximize your time at the office or while you’re out and about during the day.
8. Tone in traffic
Don’t waste your morning commute! Use the time spent bumper-to-bumper to develop your abs and buns of steel: Squeeze your derrière each time you tap the brake, holding for 10 seconds. Shoot for 10 to 15 squeezes a trip. Use good posture behind the wheel (no slouching!) and contract your ab muscles to secretly tone in traffic.
9. You know squat!
At your desk chair, pretend you’re going to sit but don’t — stop and come back up without using your arms. Always start squats by lowering your hips, not bending knees forward, and keeping your weight on your heels. Repeat the motion throughout the day (even at the potty!) for 15 to 20 total.
10. Firm As You File
Remember your sneaky traffic toning? Pause from your papers with a few wall push-ups. Place hands wide at shoulder height against the wall. Take a couple of steps back so your body is at a slight angle and your weight is on your toes, and do three sets of 10 push-ups. Strengthens chest and triceps. You can also do this using the bathroom counter…just wash your hands after!
11. Walk and Talk
Every time you grab the phone, stand up and pace around. Obviously, this works best if you have an office and not a cube, but use the same principle for your cell calls! You could even suggest a walking meeting to get some fresh air while you hash out ideas. Heavy people sit on average two and a half hours more per day than thin people, according to the Mayo Clinic.
12. Get face time
We use e-mail so much we’ve forgotten what our co-workers look like. Pick a colleague or two who sits farthest from you and deliver 10 of those daily messages in person. And go out of your way: Hit a bathroom or a copier on another floor — and take the stairs, of course.
13. Try a simple chair workout
Dips: If your chair has wheels, brace it against something. Facing forward, place palms on the front edge of the seat with knees bent at a right angle. Lower butt toward the floor; raise and repeat for two sets of 10. Tones triceps.
Lifts: Seated in a chair with your back straight and your feet on the floor, squeeze knees together and gently bring them toward your chest. Do two sets of ten. Strengthens abdominals.
14. Casual day payoff
Did you know that you burn more calories during the day wearing comfy clothes like jeans and flats than donning constricting suits, skirts and heels. Why? Because you walk more around the office and during your lunch break, a study found. Now you just have to convince the boss to make Casual Friday everyday.
15. Pack Your Portions
If you like to snack, portion out what you want to eat for the day into pint-size zip bags, or buy single-serving portions. For example, a serving size of Reduced Fat Wheat Thins is 16 crackers, so pack that and only that. An even better option? Pack an apple and string cheese or some veggies and a travel size hummus.
16. Ditch the Soda (Even Diet)
Your body doesn’t recognize calories from liquids the same way it does those from foods, so you won’t get those “stop eating” signals to help you cut back later on. Change from regular soda or fruit juice to green tea, water with a slice of lemon, or a flavored seltzer if you want the bubbles.
17. At Lunch, Pick a Pita
Use one mini whole-wheat pita or a light English muffin instead of the usual two slices of white or refined wheat bread for your sandwich. You’ll get more fiber with fewer calories.
18. An Apple (or More) a Day
They’re packed with fiber and water, so your stomach will want less. Plus, the crunch helps to keep you mentally satisfied…an important part of losing weight. Try two small apples and two fewer cookies.
19. Tweak your treat
Instead of a large caffè latte and a chocolate cream-cheese muffin, get a small nonfat latte, with sugar-free syrup if you like it sweet, and a mini snack. Starbucks had petite scones and cake pops if you want to splurge without going overboard (and man, they are good).
20. Do the pizza pat
If you’re getting pizza, blot your slice with a napkin to cut anywhere from a teaspoon to a tablespoon (!) of grease — and calories.
21. Eat like a kid
You don’t have to give up that fast-food lunch if you order smaller portions: Instead of a Quarter Pounder with Cheese and large fries, opt for the cheeseburger Happy Meal. You can even play with the toy.
22. Weigh Yourself Down
When you’re grocery shopping or running errands, pick a basket instead of the cart. When you have to carry your purchases, you increase you resistance and burn more calories while toning your arms and shoulders. Not to mention, if you have to carry it, you might think twice about adding that ice cream!
23. Pump at the pump
Instead of fuming over gas prices, think about firming your calves: With one hand on your car, stand on the balls of your feet and slowly rise up and down for as long as it takes your tank to fill.
24. Shop till the pounds drop
At the mall, try on at least ten outfits, both pants and shirts. No need to buy! Then, pick a store at the other end of the mall. Repeat.
25. Recharge yourself
Anytime you’re waiting in line, stand evenly on both feet, clasp hands behind your back and squeeze shoulder blades together to open your chest, an energizing yoga-based move that stimulates the nervous system. Hold for 10 to 20 seconds while slowly breathing in and out, taking longer on the inhale.
Check back tomorrow when we lay out habits you can incorporate when you’re at home! But first, do you have any daytime dos and don’ts? Share your nine-to-five fixes!