How to Keep Yourself Fit despite an 80 Hour Work Week

From doctors to computer engineers, pilots to rocket scientists, brain surgeons to lawyers, everyone has a super busy work schedule nowadays.

With growing opportunities and multi-tasking lifestyles, the 7-8 work hours per day aren’t sufficient or lucrative for people working in various fields. Your day starts with work, and ends with it and that pretty much covers your day.

However, you need a loyal accomplice- ‘good health’ to help you work well through hectic schedules, help you give your best without feeling fatigued or droopy (and bring the promotions your way).

So, weird hours be damned, learn to get healthy with me.

Mind mindless hogging

Your diet is majorly responsible for 85% of your success or failure when it comes to staying healthy.

Stress is inevitable at work. But, one of the mindless acts one commits at such times is indulging in stress eating. Munching on comfort food does no doubt deliver comfort for temporary moments, but also brings an eventual bulge in your tummy.

The best way to avoid this behavior is to not keep any comfort foods stocked in your work desk. Instead keep health and weight friendly food items like a small box of dry-fruits, green tea sachets (avoid coffee/ milk tea fondness), a pack of whole multigrain biscuits or traditional biscotti’s.

Don’t forget the food with the files

Long hours at work imply breakfast, lunch, evening supper (and maybe even dinner) at work. So, carry along home food with your work files. Plan your food itinerary in advance, or you’ll end up ordering hotel/cafe food or eating frozen food, which mainly satisfies the taste buds, but not your immunity system.

But where have I got the time to cook? Valid enough a question! Arrange for a helper, or opt for food delivery services, which prepare healthy, balanced diets and deliver it to your workplace at your desired time.

For the liquids, carry flavored or plain glucose sachets, which can be mixed into water. Keep a protein powder in your desk and mix it into milk. Use a shaker if you’re willing to carry one.

Turn smoke breaks into stroll breaks

So, all you got is a 5 minute break, and you decide to take a few puffs, which might help you relax or think better work-related ideas. This again is a misinformation that you have fed into your subconscious mind.

A few puffs are going to relax you ‘now’ but over a period of time it is only going to make you more drained, mentally and physically. Instead take a 5 minute stroll, be it around the office building.

In your next 5 minute quickie, go to a silent corner and meditate. You might find it highly boring in the initial; but once you start doing that every day, you will start feeling rejuvenated and turn better at work in the next few days.

In case you are completely addicted, you may consider opting for smoking cessation techniques like NRT, E-cigs, hypnosis, or NLP, etc.

Office Workout 

Check out these simple exercises that you can perform during work hours:

  • Take the stairs.
  • Perform squats as you sit or get up from your chair (Nobody is going to even notice it).
  • Hold your water bottle at chest level, twist it to the far right with your right hand, and then bring it back to centre. Now move onto the left hand and repeat the same.
  • Keep your legs straight, cross one above the other. Push the top leg on the one below, and resist with the leg at the bottom.
  • Stretch your hands and legs occasionally throughout the day.

Weekend lags

Similar to jet lags, hectic work schedules are capable of giving you weekend lags. All one feels like doing is ‘eat, sleep and watch TV’. You feel lazy to even walk till the house door. It’s alright; you deserve this on your weekends.

But, take out at least one hour on this day and head to the gym. You will return more energetic and announce at home ‘Let’s head out and do something fun.’ 

Sanity at work                                                   

What keeps one going is a good work environment? You can’t enjoy or concentrate at work if you can’t get along with the people around you. This further secretes the ‘bad’ juices in your body, which give headaches and neck pains.

Shun away bitching and gossiping, which can create feuds. Realize that everybody has a perspective, which can very well be different from yours. And when it comes to putting forward your viewpoints, do it like an evolved human. Peace!

Above all, enjoy yourself while you work. Don’t crib about the long hours you have to devote. Don’t even compare yourself with your friend who may have a way more relaxed life.

Believe that all your hard work is definitely going to pay off incredibly. A positive attitude and faith works best to help you find your accomplice- good health. Cheers to this accomplice!

Vani Chugh writes health, technology and social media related posts for several websites including her own company Vani Online Media.


Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.

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