I spend at least 8 hours a day at my desk, usually more. I'll get sucked into my daily tasks and projects, and next thing I know I've been working for 4 hours straight without any movement.


Within a year of my first office job, the consequences of such little movement started to appear. I began suffering from lower back pain, my body always felt stiff, and my sleep began to suffer as well.

Once I began my fitness journey, I realized that what I did in the gym wasn't enough. I had to stay mindful of my body and my wellness at all times, especially while at work.

If you work in an office environment, chances are you may be suffering from the same side effects caused by sitting for extended periods. If this story resonates with you, here are some stretches you can incorporate into your day-to-day desk warrior lifestyle in order to minimize pain and maximize energy.

Lunge

Courtesy of Charlene Izere/xoNecole

The lunge targets your hip flexors. Tight or weak hip flexors can lead to poor posture and lower back pain, so it's important to give your hips the TLC it deserves so you can slay the day.

How To: Widen your stance in a lunge formation and keep your feet shoulder-width apart. Place your hands on your hips and inhale as you pull your belly button. As you exhale, squeeze your glutes, and push your hips forward. Do this for 10-15 seconds on each leg.

Cross Body Stretch

Courtesy of Charlene Izere/xoNecole

Staring at a screen all day will tighten the muscles around your shoulder and neck, building up tension and potentially causing headaches. Do the cross body stretch to alleviate this tension.

How To: Bring your arm across your chest and use your other arm to stretch it across your body. Keep your elbow below shoulder height. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat with your other arm.

Plank

Courtesy of Charlene Izere/xoNecole

The plank strengthens the core muscles that support you and control your spine and pelvis. While this move is usually nobody's favorite stretch, the plank is an essential tool to strengthen your foundation.

How To: Place your forearms on the ground, keeping your elbows directly beneath shoulders. Your arms should be parallel to your body and shoulder width apart. Keeping your back straight, tighten your core, and hold for 30 seconds.

Incorporate these three simple stretches into your daily routine, and you'll be able to kill it at your job without killing your body in the process!

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