Set a timer to get up every 20 minutes or so
You’ve heard this tip before, but it’s worth repeating. Simply standing up more often helps to prevent weight gain versus sitting. We expend a surprising number of calories through non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT)—activities like walking to the water cooler, vacuuming, and even toe tapping and fidgeting. This incidental movement can help with fat loss, say The Nutrition Twins, Lyssie Lakatos, RDN, and Tammy Lakatos Shames, RDN. Obese people tend to sit 2.5 hours a day more than their sedentary lean counterparts, research shows. Some fitness bands not only track your steps, but they’ll remind you if you’ve been inactive for a certain period of time. You can set a quiet vibration timer on your phone or a desktop one with your sound turned off (like e.ggtimer.com) that’ll remind you to get up and take a loop around the office. Need major weight-loss motivation? Here’s the secret weight-loss advice used by the folks on The Biggest Loser and other reality shows.
Toss out junky snacks
Rid your desk of those “emergency” sweets, suggests Lakatos Shames. Out of sight, out of mind. When you’re not surrounded by temptations, it’s much easier to stay away from foods that can lead to weight gain.
Stock up on healthy snacks
We’ve all had those days where a meeting runs way too long and you don’t have time to grab lunch. Your best bet to prevent a “hangry” (hunger + angry) episode: Rely on fiber-filled, protein-packed snacks that will keep you satisfied on relatively few calories, suggests Lakatos. Keep non-perishable snacks in your office drawer, like pre-portioned nut packs, or lower-sugar granola bars like KIND bars, roasted chickpeas, whole grain crackers, and even a small jar of peanut butter or almond butter. If you have access to an office fridge, stash these nutritious foods: apples, edamame, black bean dip or hummus for your crackers, non-fat yogurt topped with one tablespoon of granola, cucumber slices with low-fat cottage cheese, and raw, sliced veggies like carrots, peppers, and celery. We love these 31 healthy snacks for adults.