Movement snacks for staying healthy as a remote worker

Three years ago I switched from in-person to online fitness coaching. Although I don’t regret that decision, I feel the downsides of remote work right at this moment: I’m over here in some Mexican café sitting hunched over my laptop for hours and hours. I feel tired, and even though they have a nice and quiet work atmosphere here, I can’t concentrate.

Now, ordering the next coffee isn’t really a good move. The best move is moving, refreshing the mind by getting the blood flowing through the body. A straightforward but effective productivity hack, that helps me stay fit and focused. And if you’re a remote worker, I’m convinced it works for you too.

The bare truth: we’re not born to sit in front of computers and touchscreens all day. We’re supposed to move. All day. If you do so, you’ll see that you don’t just burn more calories and lose weight. Movement, or more precisely contracting our muscles, releases hormones that make us concentrate and feel better.

And I’m not just claiming that. The positive influence of physical movement on brain activity is a scientifically proven fact. The more you move during work sessions, the better you focus and perform. Also, you’ll need less coffee and sleep better.

There is absolutely nothing that speaks against taking regular 1-minute movement breaks during work. My colleague Joe calls this movement snacking. And here’s a picture of our mascot nailing it:

Movement Snacks

Which movements you do doesn’t matter so much – as long as they make your heart rate go up a little and don’t get you injured.

While I believe every healthy person can theoretically perform a few squats, arm rotations, or such, the hard part is doing this often and regularly.

Here are two ways that help you not forget about your movement snacks:

1) Set an alarm that reminds you every 30 minutes.

2) Stack a movement with another habit (whatever thing you already do regularly). To get started, a little note like this one helps:

Both options are good. Try which one works better for you. So if you want to improve your mental and physical health, work more productively, and feel better, then snack movements, not junk food.

Ps.: I still snack too much junk food, though.