I see many articles in magazines and on the Internet which have to do with the subject of finding a way to.
I have noticed a couple of things related to this subject in my slightly more than half a century of working and my 38 years of exercising.
First, scheduling things around the work schedule can be a bit of a problem for many people. This can be especially the case in long hour, high pressure jobs where the opportunity for exercise is often curtailed by the very nature of the business. Take the executive, or even the administrative assistant who is chained to their desk and phone for hours every day. Think even of the professional realtor, usually working on commission, who must spend even the few hours which might have been available “after work” talking to clients and researching properties. Think even of the toll booth attendant who gets home after a day on his or her feet who wants more than anything else to drop into an easy chair and take the rest of the evening off.
To make it worse, at least from the viewpoint of getting enough, or after or before work, all of these people probably have obligations to family and friends when their workday is done. Creating, and staying with, an exercise program to fit into this web woven by the realities of life can be a daunting task for most of these people. Heck, isn’t sticking with a regular exercise program a challenge even for those with plenty of time?
Now, some of us have a strong internal dedication to exercise and somehow manage to find the time. For years, for example, I, and several million others, have simply gotten up early enough, no matter what the work schedule, so that I could get my exercises done. For me, and those many others like me, however, exercise is one of the most important things in my life. For most people,however, it is going to come somewhere a little farther down the list. They, and there are more to them than the people like me, are the ones who will find it difficult to schedule an exercise program around their daily, often already hectic, personal and business lives.
I said earlier in this article that I had noticed a couple of things. The second thing I want to mention is that many people really don’t like the jobs they have!
Now, this next bit is a difficult step for many, but think about it for a moment.
Most of us, if asked about our perfect job, would like to respond that we would enjoy the idea of being able to get out of bed each day knowing that we were going to enjoy our day “at work”. Many of us, however, would also respond that we really wish we had not chosen, or settled for, the job we have now.
Sure, shifting gears and making a job change is a threatening experience under any conditions, and there are other considerations than simply our own personal pleasure…or health. We are saving money to put the kids through college, we have a ton of bills, this was the “best” job we could find near where we live, this job makes people respect me…etc. A big, and scary factor is that choosing to take another job may lower the income, at least temporarily. It may mean moving to a job that normally does not generate the “respect” we think we need and deserve. It may not be in line with our training or experience, causing us to go through a period of starting over. I’ve done this more than once in my life, and I know the emotional toll, no matter how temporary it may be, of being the “new kid” all over again after having been the boss…or at least the expert.
Still, if a change of job is going to produce more happiness in your life and possibly an improvement in your health, perhaps it should at least be given some consideration. In fact, being happy with your job and daily routine can boost your health and improve your relationships, particularly the important ones. Your personal happiness may improve and your immune system may thank you as well!
Maybe you will have to drop the country club membership and give up champagne and switch to a less expensive wine. If you are happier and can find the time and energy to enjoy life, isn’t that possibly worth the adjustment?
So, what does this this discussion about changing jobs have to do with exercise at work?
Just suppose that after making an honest assessment of who you are and what you would most like to do, you can find a more physically demanding job somewhere in the field you really wish you were in. Suppose that job would, by its nature, allow you to get much of the exercise you know you need while at work! Additionally, if you were now in a job, or at least a field, that pleased you more, you would be getting double health benefits.
Over the years, I have run into many people who left high pressure, and high paying jobs, to pursue new careers which satisfied them more. Among these are a stock broker and a dentist who became truck drivers, and a veterinarian (with a Ph.D.) who became a furniture salesman, just to mention a couple of specific cases. I know a man who used to make over $75,000 a year who now works in a warehouse and enjoys the daily physical challenge much more than he enjoyed being in commission sales. I know people who have left desk jobs and gone into retail sales because that job required them to be on their feet moving around all day. And then there’s the lady who worked all her life in an office and took a vacation and went scuba diving. She is now a licensed diving instructor and spends her days involved in a healthy activity which she loves in an environment which she finds stimulating and pleasing, helping others learn to love what she loves.
These are all happier doing what they really wanted to do rather than what they had once “thought” they wanted to do.
While the pay in many of these more physical jobs may be lower than executive salaries, quite often the people who enter more physically demanding fields eventually wind up making almost as much, or more, than they did before. The reason is simple. They are now doing a job which pleases them, and this, in turn, causes them to put more of themselves into the process rather than simply going through the motions in a job which they hate. They often also wind up becoming “the expert” in their field.
True, changing jobs in order to get more exercise is not a solution which is for everyone, and there will almost certainly NOT be much of a train-up period while you get accustomed to the new, more physically demanding, situation. However, if you can tough it out until your muscles and joints become accustomed to these new demands, this could be the way for your to get more exercise at work and more pleasure out of life!