How to work out at work: 4 exercises to try at your desk


HOUSTON – If you’re struggling with wanting to be healthier in the New Year and not having enough time to work out, Dr. Richard Harris from Kelsey-Seybold Clinic in Katy says there are four exercises you can do at a desk.

“I usually recommend my patients get up and move every 30 minutes, every hour, take a little minute walk just so you're not planted in the chair for very long periods of time,” Harris said.

Sitting makes your metabolism slow down and has even worse long-term effects, according to Harris.

“There's evidence that links time spent sitting down with increased chance of death,” he said.

Therefore, try doing each of these for 10 seconds every day and increasing by 10 seconds as they get easier:

1. Dips

Bringing your hands to the edge of your chair, dipping your bodyweight down and pushing up with your arms will work your triceps and chest.

2. Leg lifts

From a seated position, alternate your legs straight in front of you. This works your quads, hamstrings and glutes. 

3. Wall sits

For full lower body engagement, press your back against a wall and bend your knees 90 degrees. Press your bodyweight against the wall for just a few seconds and you’ll feel the burn (in a good way)!


Doing regular push-ups on the ground is great but using your desk to take some of the weight of gravity off will make the motion easier and still work your muscles.

Even if you don't have a private office, Harris said there’s no shame in showing off your new workout.

“No one is judging you for trying to make yourself a little bit better than you were yesterday. In fact by doing that, you may make someone else feel comfortable about doing it and who knows before long you have an office pool of people getting together and exercising and being more active and that would be a beautiful thing,” he said.