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Your work makes you fat!

This week I read a study featured in Science Daily. With a high degree of cynicism, this study must have been performed by a NASA scientist! There was nothing we didn’t already know but you make up your own mind:

“A new study that provides a snapshot of a typical American workplace observed that chronic job stress and lack of physical activity are strongly associated with being overweight or obese.”

OMG . . . scientists studied 2782 people and found that as with many other studies we can associate “high job pressure with cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, depression, exhaustion, anxiety and weight gain.”

Nothing new here for me.

This study also found that: “exercise seemed to be the key to managing stress and keeping a healthy weight.”Fitness

Another fact we already new,  I hope they didn’t get any funding for this study!!

The lead author was Diana Fernandez, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., an epidemiologist at the URMC Department of Community and Preventive Medicine, and she stated said that in a stressful economy, exacerbated by the GFC, that employers should “focus on strengthening wellness programs to provide good nutrition, ways to deal with job demands, and more opportunities for physical activity that are built into the regular workday without penalty.”

Well Diana you won’t get an ounce of disagreement from me, 100% support for your statements and the results of your study.

My challenge would be that before small business owners started looking after the wellness and stress levels of their staff they should start with themselves.

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In many instances, I have seen owners and managers fly off the handle owing to their stress levels and that leads to staff turnover – or based on this study, them getting fat, as they now are now even more stresses, so just want to go home,eat and veg in front of the TV.

As owners and managers we need to help manage our stress levels, in order to stop the ripple stress effect.

I would like to suggest that some sort of stress reduction activity MUST be performed every day by a manager or owner. This could be as little as:

  • A walk: 15 minutes of fresh air could have a profound effect on your decision making for the day;
  • Some strength training: have some hand weights under your desk to kick start your metabolism
  • A quick set of push-ups: forget what you are wearing, just do it!
  • Just some breathing exercisers to control our heart beat and take back the control of the situation or even the full day.

You may be saying, “Are you kidding Justin? I don’t have time.”

I bet you do! I bet I could come into your office for one day and find the time for you.

How do I know?

Because I know you will find the time to solve the chaos that your stress levels will cause in the business if you don’t release. Find this time for good not evil or proactively as opposed to reactively.

There is really no excuse to get your blood pumping through your body, oxygen into your brain and the release of the endorphins through your body.

You just need to make it a priority!

Tip of the Week – Set a time in your diary for 15 minutes for your personal ‘wellness’ activity (walk, meditation, stretches, push-ups). It can be to start the day, break up the day or finish the day. But NOTHING stops you from doing this 15 minutes. Do it for 30 days and see how you feel?

What do you think?

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Justin Tamsett

Justin Tamsett

Justin is Australia’s leading fitness business management consultant. He’s worked in the industry since 1989, as a personal trainer, sales manager and health club owner. He understands the pressure that SME business owners and managers sometimes put themselves under. He’s been there and done that and now suffers from a stress-induced chronic illness! In his blog he’ll share his tips on how to stay healthy, productive and happy at work and at home, whether you’re a couch potato or a gym bunny. Follow him on Twitter @JTActiveMgmt or check out his personal blog www.JustinTamsett.com

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