E is for Excellence – And Exercise (Don’t Stop Reading Here!)

Welcome to the second post in TRC Professional Solutions’ Personal Wellness Series – providing valuable advice to help you be the best you can be, on the job and off. Whoever you are and whatever you do, you can incorporate exercise and physical fitness into your day. Here’s how.

Exercise for Productivity

Numerous studies have shown that people who exercise, even in moderation, are better workers, more productive, and happier in all aspects of their lives. According to the American Heart Association, the benefits of physical activity include:

  • Improved heart function.
  • Lower total cholesterol levels, while raising HDL, or good cholesterol.
  • Reduced risk and severity of diabetes due to increased insulin sensitivity.
  • Improved strength, balance and endurance.
  • Enhanced self-confidence and independence.

The Mayo Clinic supports these findings, noting that exercise improves your mood, combats chronic disease, helps you manage your weight, boosts your energy levels and promotes better sleep.

The Proof is in the Numbers

A recent study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine surveyed more than 10,600 workers and found that 10 percent of sick leave and higher levels of productivity loss at work were likely due to lifestyle behaviors and obesity, which relate directly to exercise and fitness habits.

  • Obese workers were 66 percent more likely to call in sick for 10 to 24 days and 55 percent more likely to take more than 25 sick days.

In a subsequent study, the journal reported that when employees get more physical activity, work performance gets a boost. Physically fit workers are likely stronger and have greater endurance. They also are less likely to feel fatigued. The second study found that:

  • Even moderate exercise was related to overall job performance, as well as the quality of work completed.
  • Workers who engaged in physical activity were more likely to have higher rates of job performance.
  • Cardiorespiratory fitness made workers more efficient in completing a greater quantity of work.

What You Can Do

When you exercise, you increase blood flow to your brain, which sharpens your awareness and makes you more ready to tackle your next big project.

  • If you’re short on time, make small changes to meet your daily goals. Take a 10-mnute walk at lunchtime or use the stairs instead of the elevator. Gradually raise the bar on those goals. Increase your walk to 15 minutes or longer if possible, or make time for a second short one later in the day.
  • Work up to at least 30 minutes of exercise a day, five days a week. In addition to improving your physical health, this will curb feelings of anxiety and depression. When you exercise, your brain releases serotonin, a neurotransmitter that sends messages to the body to stimulate mood and emotion. This improves your state of mind, making the stresses of work easier to handle.

Are you looking for a new professional job?

Contact TRC Professional Solutions today for more tips on being the best you can be every day on the job, and on building your career in engineering, accounting, finance, marketing, cyber security, logistics or supply chain management.

Next up in our Personal Wellness Series: Improving Your Life through Better Sleep and Relaxation

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