By Michelle Myers
Anyone who works from home knows how convenient it is to have a home office (and kitchen nearby). But can convenience sometimes make us too comfortable?
If you're working from home and noticed some unwanted pounds, here are six tips for preventing weight gain when you work-at-home.
1. Keep a food diary.
Force yourself to write down everything that goes into your mouth – meals, snacks, the last few bites from your child’s plate. Using a website like www.calorieking.com to keep up with your caloric intake will help you realize how many calories that go in that we often forget to count. There’s no need to go out and buy a fancy food journal. Use a magnetic pad on your refrigerator or a sticky note by the phone. For additional accountability, make yourself show your daily lists to a friend each week.
2. Move to a new location when it’s time to eat.
When it’s time for a meal or a snack, step away from your office and give yourself a break. It’s easy to get distracted with how much you are eating if you are also sending emails, listening to a conference call or researching a new account. You are also less likely to graze throughout the day if you know that you will have stop working each time a craving strikes.
3. Make grocery shopping strategic and purposeful.
If it’s not in your house, it’s not available for you to eat. Know your temptations, and avoid purchasing them at the grocery store. If you only have healthy meals and snacks available, you eliminate half the battle for yourself. As often as possible, only buy what you will need for the week. “Extra” food on hand often ends up as extra pounds. Eating right is only half the battle.
4. Explore various workouts to discover one that you think is fun.
If your workout feels like a chore or a bore, you’re likely to skip it or only attempt it half-heartedly. I’ve met so many women who force themselves to run because they think it burns the most calories. However, these are also the women who struggle with yoyoing on the scale because they aren’t consistent. Sure, anyone can force themselves to do something they don’t enjoy for a certain amount of time … but it’s difficult to make something you dread a regular part of your lifestyle. Try Kickboxing, Bootcamp, strength training, yoga, etc. until you find something that you will look forward to doing. You will maximize your success for exercising consistently if you enjoy it!
5. Schedule your workout as a reoccurring appointment on your calendar.
Just like you wouldn’t cancel on a client, don’t skip out on your workout. Schedule it on your calendar at the beginning of the week as you are booking appointments. Be sure to be realistic. If you know that you only have time to work out for 20 minutes on Tuesday, don’t schedule yourself to be at the gym for an hour. If you’re an outside of the box thinker, think outside of the gym for your workouts. Play a game of tag with your kids or find a DVD-based fitness program to go through with your husband or a close friend.
6. Take active breaks throughout the work day.
Do you think smokers who work at home take breaks for cigarettes? Sure, they do. Take a similar philosophy to give yourself “wellness walk” breaks. It doesn’t mean you have to stop working. Make a phone call while you pace around your house. Take your creative brainstorming sessions outside and run sprints. Do tricep dips while you read your email.
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Michelle Myers, an NASM-certified personal trainer, group exercise instructor, and wellness coach, says her life can be summarized by faith, family, friends, fitness and fun. Her passion is to help others discover their workout can be something they look forward to, and healthy eating doesn't mean starvation and deprivation. Working with clients of all ages across the nation, Michelle loves getting to see lives transform daily as her clients become the healthiest, strongest version of themselves through simple discipline, dedication and determination. To learn more about Michelle, see: Team Beachbody