There used to be a time that when the phrase couch potato was used, people would immediately think of someone slumped over on the sofa with a remote in one hand, a beer in the other and a few extra pounds (at least) across their mid-section. However, now that more and more people are working from home, the definition of couch potato has evolved. The reality is that you don’t have to be someone who watches television all day long to find yourself with some of the same physical consequences as traditional couch potato has. You can actually be sitting on the couch all day, working on your laptop for hours on end, and still end up being pretty lethargic. The bottom line here is that whether you’re working hard or hardly working while sitting down, it can still do a number on your health.
So, what are some tips that can motivate you to get up off of that couch and get your body into shape? Here are five things to inspire you to do just that:
Eat three full meals
It’s a rule that a lot of us learned in kindergarten, and yet so many of us still need to be reminded of how important it is to have breakfast, lunch and dinner on a daily basis. A lot of people find themselves caught up in the cycle of unhealthy snacking (which leads to unwanted pounds) because they are not eating balanced meals. So, before even sitting down on the couch in the morning or laying out on it in the evening, make sure that you had a meal with some protein, fruits and/or vegetables and whole grains first.
Now, that’s not to say that there is anything wrong with snacking. The problem is usually in the fact that we choose the wrong kinds of foods to snack on. Instead of cookies and candy bars, opt for carrot sticks, dried fruit, granola and yogurt, instead. If you’re someone who is a big soda fan, mineral water has the same “fizz effect” without all of the sugar and calories. For the couch potato, it becomes critically important to stay away from unhealthy snacks.
Take exercise breaks
If you completely loathe exercising, then you may need to start by taking little steps. If you do work from home, schedule breaks for yourself just like you would have if you worked in an office building. If you are simply laying around, for every 30-minutes of television watching that you do, take off 10 minutes to work out. During those 10-15 minutes, walk on your treadmill, take a stroll down the block or even stop to do some jumping jacks or push-ups.
Sign up for a class
Here’s the thing about an exercise class. It can be hard to get motivated to work out when you’re alone, but when you’re surrounded by other individuals, it can be just the thing that you need to get more excited about physical fitness. So, the next time you’re sitting on the couch, put your laptop in your lap and do a bit of research on yoga, Zumba, swimming, aerobics or any other kind of exercise class that make pique your interest (even if it’s just a little bit). You may not believe it, but once you actually arrive to the class, you’ll be glad that you did.
Reward your efforts
Your couch potato state doesn’t have to remain that way. Once you make the concerted effort to get off of your love seat, reclining chair or one of the queen sleeper sofas in your living or bonus room and start exercising, in time, it will show. As the pounds start to drop and the muscle tone starts to reveal itself, make sure to pat yourself on the back by giving yourself a little reward. It could be going to get a massage or even simply taking yourself to see a movie. Anything that keeps you off of your couch or gets you walking more is the main objective here. Both you and your couch will be glad that you did. Again, you don’t have to remain a couch potato!