How To Keep Fit Around A Full-Time Job

The Myprotein office might be filled with more sports and fitness enthusiasts than most, but we still spend around nine hours glued to an office chair.

We’re not alone either.

According to a study by the British Heart Foundation, a fifth of men in the UK spend the equivalent to 78 days of the year sitting, while women spend around 74. The exercise guidelines demand at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity every week, such as walking fast, or hiking. Equally, you can do 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity every week, such as running, or cycling fast. You also need to incorporate strength exercises twice a week.1

This can feel impossible between shoving a sandwich down your throat at lunch time, while you work to yet another deadline. So, what’s the answer? From asking around the Myprotein HQ, we found out exactly how it’s done…


Saly — Find something you love

Forget the facts and figures, or what the doctor says you have to do to keep fit and instead find a way to incorporate exercise into something you already enjoy doing. For Myprotein Paid Media Executive, Saly, that’s circus acts — specifically aerial silks and rope. Pretty impressive right?

Saly believes, it’s the psychological effects that get her to training, with the physical benefits simply being a bonus. She explains, “It makes me feel free and full of adrenalin, which helps me to work hard during the day in the office.”

We all know it can be hard to motivate yourself after a tough day in the office, but Saly’s love for her sport keeps her going. She says, “I train after work. It can be hard because we work long and busy days, but it’s fine because I love what I do. Also, I have friends who train with me, so we have fun while training.”

It’s clear that finding something that lights a spark, or you can share with friends, can be a huge motivator for getting your workout done. So, if you find yourself skipping the gym more often than not, it might be time to join a team or try something new.

Taking on a sport that requires skill has more than physical benefits too, as Saly now aspires to perform and hopefully teach one day too. She says, “I want to get my own training space where I can train with my friends as well as teach at charity circus abroad one day.”


Axel — Take one for the team

Can’t motivate yourself? You should try keeping fit for the sake of your team. Whether it’s the office footie team, or your local netball league, not being able to keep up with the rest of the team can be serious motivation to keep fit.

Myprotein France Country Executive, Axel, hits his training hard with this mentality.

“I train every evening after work — that’s four fitness sessions and one American football training session.”

For Axel, his fitness goes hand in hand with making his team proud. He explains “I also find a way to study competitors game film at every break I can take.” Which really shows his commitment to his sport and his team.

If you can give your training purpose, like Axel, then fitting in your fitness around your work day will become a priority, rather than an afterthought. There’s nothing more rewarding than knowing your hard work has paid off for you as well as your team.

Axel says, “My aspirations are to become a better player, so I’ll be working as hard as possible for this.” He also finds social media great for keeping him accountable. “I want to keep in decent shape so that I can keep feeding my Instagram with nice fitness content.”

If this isn’t motivation to get up from your desk and join a sports team, then I don’t know what is. Also, who doesn’t love looking good in their latest pic?


Charles — Set goals and get it done

It can be hard to get yourself out of the office and into the gym if you’re missing your “why”. This is your attainable goal, that can be anything from fitting into your favourite pair of jeans that you outgrew, or training for a half marathon.

Charles Sayer, Head of Global B2B at Myprotein gets up every morning before work at 5:20am and heads to the gym (with a little help from THE Pre-Workout+). He knows what he wants from his workouts and goes out and gets it. “I aim to slowly and healthily gain muscle over time, but I’m under no illusion that this will happen quickly thanks to my busy work schedule. I also challenge myself with half marathons every four months or so.”

Charles has set realistic goals that he knows will take some hard work, but definitely aren’t impossible. Working out before work stops those “hard day in the office” excuses in their tracks too. It also leaves Charles’ evenings and weekends free for other activities he enjoys. “I also play football with the work teams every week and enjoy runs outside at the weekend.”


Neo — Eat, sleep, and breathe fitness

If you’re reading an article on how to get your exercise in around a busy office schedule, then this probably isn’t you…

Neo’s a Business Analytics Manager here at Myprotein, but he could be a pro sporting hero from his intense regimen. Still, you might feel inspired by his commitment to the gym over his desk — or the fact that he can give a heck of a lot to both.

Here’s something to aim for, at least. Neo says “I get up at 5:30am to do fasted cardio for 45 minutes before work. Then, I train weights every day after work followed by 45 minutes of cardio.”

You think that’s a lot? It’s not over yet — “I also play basketball for four hours each week with my old university team.”

If Neo can fit this much into a week, then you can definitely squeeze in that Zumba class.


This is how I do it — Switch up your commute

I like my evenings free and my mornings not too early, so incorporating my workouts into my commute. If you don’t mind arriving at work a little windswept and you can swiftly step into an office shower, then this is an ideal way to fit in your fitness around your work.

Before I started at Myprotein, I’d barely trundled down the road on a bike, so you definitely don’t have to be a pro. Armed with my second-hand bike, I took on the 8 miles to work — and back home again.

Now, I’m fitter than ever, rarely have to get up before 7, and have the evenings to do whatever I want — mainly binge Netflix and eat. I’ve found I’m also a lot less stressed when I get home as I haven’t sat in rush-hour traffic and have burnt off any office angst.

If you can deal with the odd rain shower and still look your boss in the eye while wearing lycra, then see if there’s a safe way for you to cycle to work.


Don’t be a slave to your desk

If you’re using your desk as an excuse for not exercising, then you’ve just read 5 good reasons for why you need to stop, tie up your trainers, and get out there. Whether you squeeze a run into your lunch break, get up at the crack of dawn, or use it as a way to get to and from work, there’s so many ways you can fit in fitness around an office job.



Evangeline Howarth

Evangeline Howarth

Writer and expert

Evangeline is a Veganuary convert and newbie vegan with a degree in English and French from the University of Nottingham. Having recently ditched the meat and dairy, she really enjoys the new flavours and cooking techniques she’s encountered on a plant-based diet. She’s been shocked by the millions of ways you can use tofu, however still hasn’t found a decent cheese substitute! When she’s not in the office or eating, Evangeline usually out running or sailing. As a qualified RYA Dinghy Instructor and a marathon runner, she knows the importance of providing your body with the right nutrients for endurance sports as well as a busy lifestyle. Find out more about Evie's experience here.