24 No-Brainer Ways to Move More Throughout the Day

24 No-Brainer Ways to Move More Throughout the Day

Whether you’re working from home or back in the office, it’s important to remember to move more throughout the day.

And when you’re sitting at a desk all day, it might be hard to make sure you’re getting enough daily movement in addition to your planned workouts.

Small movements throughout the day contribute to your non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT), which is the energy you burn outside of exercising.

This contributes to your daily calorie burn, says Tom Holland, C.S.C.S., exercise physiologist and author of The Micro Workout Plan.

Mom and toddler playing on yoga mat at home

These unstructured movements are important because you can’t rely solely on your daily workout to cancel out the negative effects of a desk-bound lifestyle.

“The longer we stay seated, the more time we’re spending not using the large muscles of our body,” says clinical exercise physiologist Jack McNamara, C.S.C.S., a tutor with TRAINFITNESS.

Bottom line — if you want to stay healthy while working from home or in the office, regular activity is a must.

Here are 26 creative ways to get moving.

1. Wake up and stretch

Woman stretching her leg in her bed early in the morning.

Start your day right — roll out of bed and do some side bends, arm circles, and toe touches. Do these five morning stretches to set the tone for your day.

Don’t want to get out of bed just yet? Just sit up in bed and do these 5 yoga poses for tight hips.

2. Start every hour with movement

Keep the movement going by starting every hour with something active. Set alarms on your phone or smartwatch if needed to keep yourself accountable.

Some ideas: Do 25 jumping jacks at the top of each hour. Go outside and walk around your office building. Or set a timer and do 10 minutes of light stretching.

3. Walk more

If you’re working from home now instead of commuting to work, use that time before and after work to take a long walk or run errands that are close by.

If you’re back at the office, instead of driving to get lunch, walk there instead. Or hit the stairwell and go up and down a few floors.

4. Drink up

Very Berry Bevvy Spritzer in a glass

Keep a glass of water on your desk and get up to refill it every time you run out.

Bonus: The more water you drink, the more often you’ll have to walk to the bathroom!

If you’re not a fan of plain water or just want to sass things up, flavor-wise, make a Very Berry BEVVY Spritzer or a Strawberry Basil BEVVY Lemonade.

5. Make phone calls active

Woman WFH walking while talking on phone

Instead of sitting and chatting on the phone, take a walk around the house, knock out a set of bodyweight squats, or do leg stretches.

Keep your hands free and use wireless earbuds or headphones for your call so you can do a few sets of dumbbell curls.

Or challenge yourself to a wall sit for the duration of your call.

Skip the conference room meeting and make it a walking meeting. Calling into a meeting? Use a headset or earbuds and take a walk around the office.

6. Move before and after meetings

If you can’t do a walking meeting, do a set of 10 push-ups (or one of these push-up alternatives) before you log on to a Zoom meeting, and another set after you log off.

Or try these lower-back and hip stretches to work the kinks out after sitting through a long meeting.

7. Do some desk stretches

Woman stretching while working on computer from a home office

Feeling stiff after spending the day hunched over your laptop? Try some of these stretches designed to combat hours of sitting.

8. Park far away

Running errands? Pick a spot in the back of the lot so you can rack up extra steps.

If you’re in a parking structure, park on the top level so you can get some stair work in.

9. Move during commercial breaks

Father and two daughters exercising at home

With all the streaming services available, it’s easier than ever to avoid traditional commercial breaks and watch a whole episode (or you know, season) without moving.

Break up your binge-watching session every 20 minutes or so with a break of your own.

Get up and march in place, walk up and down the stairs, or dance around the room with your kids for five minutes.

Or turn it into a family challenge — see who can rack up the most push-ups, sit-ups, or jumping jacks during each commercial break.

10. Play with your pets

Small goldendoodle chasing a ball outside

Take a break from work or chores and spend five minutes throwing a ball or stick for your dog to fetch, or tossing your cat’s favorite toy around the house for them to chase.

Or make your four-legged friend extra happy by taking your pet on multiple quick walks around the neighborhood instead of parking yourself in front of the TV or computer.

Bonus: Studies show that having a pet may help lower stress and ease anxiety.

11. De-stress with yoga

If you’re not into high-intensity workouts, unroll your yoga mat and de-stress with a streaming yoga class.

Check out the BODi Yoga Studio or try a program like 3 Week Yoga Retreat.

12. Take the stairs whenever you can

See Tip #10: Once you’ve parked your car on the top level, do an extra lap or two up and down the stairs if you have time for a quick burst of cardio.

13. Get a treadmill or cycling desk

Typing while walking or pedaling may feel weird at first, but it’s a great way to sneak in some movement when you can’t get away from your computer.

14. Set up a step challenge

Recruit friends, family, or coworkers. The friendly competition will inspire you to find unique ways to get your steps in!

15. Take a dance break

Dancing is fun and burns plenty of calories. If you have two left feet, Shaun T can help you find your rhythm with his dance workout LET’S GET UP!

His fun dance workouts feature easy-to-follow cardio dance sequences, bodyweight resistance training, and even some INSANITY-based moves set to music.

16. Take more trips when unloading groceries

Instead of trying to break the world record of most grocery bags carried in one trip, make a point of grabbing one or two at a time so you take as many trips back and forth to the car as possible.

17. Join in your kids’ playtime

Go for a bike ride, practice hula hooping, learn a new jump rope trick, or play a game of tag.

18. Do mini-chores

Break up your list of housework into mini-chores.

Instead of trying to clean the whole house in one go, do a series of small clean-up jobs over the course of your day or week: vacuum the living room, empty the dishwasher, do one load of laundry, or clean the toilets.

19. Take up an outdoor hobby

Gardening and hiking are great ways to get moving and connect with nature.

Studies show that there are numerous benefits to being outside, like boosting your mood and reducing stress.

20. Skip the drive-thru

It can be hard to resist the convenience of the drive-thru window or curbside pickup.

The next time you grab takeout, park your car and walk inside to order instead.

21. Use the farthest bathroom

You’ve probably heard this tip for staying active at the office — but you can use it at home, too!

If your WFH space is downstairs, for example, use the upstairs bathroom when you’ve gotta go.

22. Squeeze in a quick workout

Got five minutes between meetings? Try these 11 feel-good stretching stretches.

If you have more free time in your schedule, you can knock out a quick Job 1 workout with Super Trainer Jennifer Jacobs.

She’ll lead you through a total-body sweat session in just 20 minutes!

23. Stay active after hours

If you spend your workdays at a desk, make your evenings as active as possible.

As soon as you get home or sign off your computer, reset by taking a long walk around the neighborhood with your family or take your pooch for a trip to the park.

Or do a live streaming workout on BODi with your favorite instructor.

24. Stretch before bed

bedtime stretch session not only helps with mobility but is also a great way to calm your mind before you fall asleep.