According to a recent study, working at an office plays a role in weight gain. Nearly two-thirds blame the workplace for their struggle with their scales. Nine out of ten gainers agree that the office played a role.

As most of us know, me included, it’s a lot easier to gain the weight than to lose it! But the study does provide some clues as to how to turn some of this unhealthy behavior around.

Office work makes you heavier…

Infographic from NYPost.

1. Snacking at the desk

The best thing to remember is “out of sight, out of mind”. Put your bowls of candy away. If you can’t, put them in an opaque bowl so you can’t see what’s inside.

Avoid having snacks at your desk. If you absolutely must have a snack, leave it somewhere you have to get up and go get it. Make snacking hard to do, and you’ll do less of it.

2. Sitting at the desk all day

Sitting is bad for us. We all know this. It’s important to get up and move around during the day. Not just when you leave for lunch or home! Many smart watches and step counters, as well as phone apps, will automatically remind you to get up and move. 

If you’ve been sitting for a while, you might not remember to take your walking breaks. Use the app.

Standing desks help too, if your company provides them. Literally getting off your behind for a while will burn some more calories!

3. Take-out/fast food/eating out for lunch

This one is simple to solve, but not necessarily easy, if you get what I mean. The simple answer is to prep food ahead of time. Not necessarily that easy, though, if you’re juggling a job and kids and a spouse.

Enlist all the help you can. Are your kids old enough to participate in making dinner and/or their own lunches? Maybe they could even make YOUR lunch! You might need to make some time in the family schedule to plan the week’s meals.

If there’s no fridge at work, you’ll need to get a bit more creative to find solutions that don’t require storing food at cold temperatures. But they do exist!

4. Too tired to exercise

Here’s another problem with a simple-but-not-easy answer. Exercise in the morning. I know – easier said than done! Especially when you have to drop off the kids on your way to work. So if you can’t get it done in the morning…

Remember that your half hour workout doesn’t actually have to be done continuously for you to get the benefits. Can you carve ten minutes out in the morning, lunchtime, and evening? There’s your half hour.  And better than no exercise at all.

Moving around during the day helps too. Take walking breaks at work, take the stairs, park farther away from the store. Do it when you can. Get up to go see your colleague to discuss business matters, if they’re available.

The other issue a lot of people face is that they plan to work out after work. But there’s a happy hour or other team bonding they don’t feel they can miss.

It’s true you’ll probably be seen as more of a team player if you go to these events. But you don’t have to go to all of them.

And when you do go, you don’t actually have to drink any alcohol or eat any food. Even if it’s free! Have some club soda or water or something else sugar-free. You don’t have to close the bar down either. You can stay for a while and then head off to the gym.

Another way to handle this is to schedule sessions at the gym. Maybe there’s a group class that you enjoy. Or you have personal training sessions at a specific time every week. And you can invite your coworkers along too!

Summary

It’s definitely easier to gain weight than to lose it. And it’s especially easy to put it on at the office! 

But there are some changes – some small, others maybe a bit more involved – that you can make to help you avoid the gain.

Are you making some changes at your office? Tell us about it in the comments!