If you’re looking for new ways to up the ante on your work performance, exercise can do more than increase your energy and relieve stress.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, regular exercise can ensure that your thinking, learning and judgment skills remain sharp. If you want to achieve your goals at work, following are ways exercise can help.
Being a top performer in a competitive work environment can be tough and may make you feel like you’re trapped inside a bubble. With ever-increasing expectations placed on you, you may need to take a step back to gain perspective. Exercise enables you to vigorously move your body, sweat out toxins and clear your head. These are key ingredients for gaining perspective and focusing on the bigger picture.
Engaging in a challenging workout like high-intensity interval training or a calming workout like yoga can provide a balanced approach not only to your fitness regimen, but also to your work.
With more companies offering on-site fitness centers, indoor and outdoor campus spaces and daily yoga and meditation sessions, there are many opportunities to engage with your team and clients to build those relationships. You can take your team meetings outside and walk while you review key wins for the week, talk to a teammate about how to move forward on a project over a spin or yoga class or go for a run with a client to strategize for the upcoming year.
When engaging with others in your professional network over exercise, you’re in essence creating a sense of camaraderie on both a personal and a professional level, which can deepen and strengthen those relationships in new and exciting ways.
When you’re physically strong, it often translates into being mentally strong, which can create confidence and resilience. You may be in a better position to take difficult situations, tight deadlines, rejections and failures in stride, so you can keep your eyes on the prize when it comes to achieving your work goals.
Boot-camp and strength-training workouts are great for providing confidence in yourself, your work and your life. The next time a challenging client situation or project lands on your desk, you’ll be better equipped to face it head-on and with confidence.
Mind-body workouts can help with improved coordination, memory, cognitive functioning and creativity. The more you do these types of exercises, whether it be through early-morning Pilates videos in your living room, lunchtime dance classes at the corporate fitness center or weekend warrior sweat sessions at the barre studio, you also may be able to take these skills and translate them into your job.
When you open your mind and connect it with your body, your creativity may start to unfold. Creative thinking skills can often help you solve problems, better market your products or sell your ideas.
Exercise allows you to focus on and take care of yourself, which can help you tap into your own authenticity. Being authentic and true to yourself can help you be a better leader, increase your productivity and ultimately help you achieve your goals at work.
You also may have more trust in yourself to make decisions based on your own insights, experiences and data, even when you hit roadblocks along the way. In addition, your authenticity could be well respected at work, and you may inspire your team to find their own sense of authenticity.
Keep these important impacts of exercise in mind and find ways to incorporate physical activity into your daily life so that you can be at your best both professionally and personally. It will provide you with balance, strength and courage to keep learning, growing and achieving at your highest potential in your career and beyond.
Reena Vokoun is owner of the Los Altos-based Passion Fit. For more information, visit passionfit.com.