Office Fitness Motivation

By Dane Lakin

How to springboard your team into keeping fit

Trying to fit in keeping fit can be a difficult task when it comes to being a full time adult. In between working, dashing between meetings, finding time to eat healthy and still maintain some kind of social life, exercise can get put on the back burner until you simply ‘have more time’. The NHS guidelines for fitness says that you should do 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise a week and two days a week working out your major muscles. This breaks down to roughly 11 minutes of intense exercise a day. 11 minutes of exercise doesn’t sound like a lot but finding motivation to make time for those 11 minutes is probably the difficult part. After working all day, travelling to and from work, seeing your friends and making the day's meals, you might think those precious 11 minutes could be better spent.

Get people into groups and set them a target

So how can you motivate people to get up and get exercising? Well one of the best ways to get people exercising is money, obviously. But if you don’t want to make that commitment, what’s the next best thing? Get people into groups and set them a target. That way, people set themselves goals as teams to commit to certain amounts of exercise and, because they’re in competition not only with other teams but members within their own team, they’re more likely to complete them. It takes away the pain of motivating yourself for a better body or a healthier lifestyle and gives them the goal of just doing that extra 5 minutes to beat the next team or just going that extra mile on the treadmill. It makes exercise fun.

So pair your office off into teams and start getting ideas together for what you can do to get them active. Struggling? Well, we have some suggestions. Each of these can be done over a month so it gives people plenty of time to achieve these goals in their busy life.

1. RUN A MARATHON

Not individually, of course. Each team has to run or walk the distance of a marathon on a treadmill or out and about and record their miles. It’s not a matter of how you get there, just that you do.

2. SWIM THE CHANNEL

Split the 21 miles into lengths of a pool and then divide them up between your individual team members.

3. RIDE THE MILAN-SAN REMO

Split the 185 miles of cycling between your teams and dust off that old bike in your shed to race the other teams to the finish line.

These competitions are brilliant for everyone from novices to the office Olympian, as the amounts can be split to ability. It’s taking part that counts and helping your team get to the finish line. But, if you are an office of Olympians, you could always split into teams of 3 and take on a leg of a full length triathlon each? Just to see how many Brownlee brothers you have in the office. Who knows, you could even reward the people who complete the challenges with an award to say congratulations.