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HindustanTimes Mon,01 Sep 2014

Recharge yourself during lunch break

Kavita Devgan, Hindustan Times  Mumbai, July 23, 2013
First Published: 14:27 IST(23/7/2013) | Last Updated: 14:58 IST(23/7/2013)

Come to think of it, our daily lunch hours add up to five hours per week. That’s nearly 22 hours in a regular month. So instead of wasting this time, use it to get fit, recharge your emotional batteries and give your brain some down time to rejuvenate. Here are some great ideas for your lunch hour — Monday through Friday.

Leg work
Go for a power walk. Even 20 minutes sneaked out of your lunch hour are enough. The benefits of walking are endless: it helps relieve stress; keeps blood pressure under control; burns off the extra kilos; tones the body; lowers the risk of umpteen lifestyle disorders such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes; and increases bone density. If it’s pouring outside, get on an exercise ball to banish your belly fat. Do two sets of 10 to 12 crunches during the lunch hour. How to arrange for a stability ball in office? Simple, get a few colleagues to pool in and store one in an empty conference room.

Hit snooze
Who wouldn’t want to catch up on sleep at work? However, we are not asking you to put your head down on the desk and snore away. What we are suggesting is that you learn to arrange yourself on the office chair (to nap comfortably) so that no one notices something amiss, or sneak away to an empty boardroom. Even a small catnap (10-15 minutes) will refresh your mind and put a whole new perspective on the afternoon by recharging you.

Treat yourself
Get a massage and shampoo, or a classic mani-pedi at your local salon. But make sure you go somewhere close by, to avoid wasting precious time travelling, and always make an appointment. You can eat a sandwich while the pampering is on. Short lunch breaks are also a great time to catch up on small beauty fixes — get a trim, pluck your eyebrows or just a relaxing facial in this time.

Look inwards
Tell your co-workers to leave you alone. Being by yourself will lower your stress and anxiety levels, and also help you sort out specific issues that may be bothering you. Or go visit an art gallery to look at some good art, wander through a local park, or just sit alone and let your mind wander in the conference room — it is bound to be free during this hour. Listen to some soothing music; keeping a good playlist handy on your phone, music player or streaming service. is a good idea. You could also catch up on your reading or on a hobby such as knitting or learning a new language.

Eat out
Pack a picnic lunch and invite some friends to do the same. Store it in the fridge at work. Then, during the lunch hour, take your dabba to a nearby park, terrace or community garden (many office spaces have these on their premises) and after eating, enjoy a casual stroll in the fresh air.


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