Telecommuting or freelancing means more flexibility, but it could also lead to tighter sweatpants.
Technology has changed the way we work. We’re no longer tied to an office and can often log in from home or a neighborhood coffee shop. But the things that make working remotely convenient — comfy clothes, zero commute — might wreak havoc on our waistlines.
Some 53 million Americans freelance (according to a recent Freelancers Union Survey), and with many creative types in Nashville, the number of Music City independent contractors is high. Plus, about 20 percent of the workforce in Middle Tennessee telecommutes. Laptops and high-speed connections make us more mobile, but are we, in fact, sitting still? Here are four common pitfalls that lead to the freelancer 15 — and solutions to avoid them:
- The zero-commute conundrum
Teleworking means you’re not hauling butt to catch a bus or dashing to and from a parking lot. You might not even leave your house. Treadmill desks are an option for logging more steps, or you can simply schedule short walk breaks and tire out Spot in the process.
- The pantry is not your pal
You might be tempted to nosh on a bag of chips while working on a stressful or boring project. Or maybe pie seems more appealing, easier and faster than making a salad for lunch. Have healthy snacks on hand. Prepare nutritious lunches the night before or make enough (healthy) dinner to have leftovers.
- Beware the pastry case
Coffee shops are great for a change of scenery, but it’s hard to deny the lure of muffins, croissants and seasonal lattes. Limit coffee shop visits to one or two mornings a week. Eat a healthy breakfast before leaving your house, order only one coffee beverage and leave before a doughnut becomes lunch.
- Workout saboteurs
Cold or wet weather might seem like a great reason not to leave the house, especially if you’ve been firing off emails in your bathrobe. Working from home makes it easy to hibernate and put off a run or yoga class until the next day — or the next. Even if you don’t shower first thing in the morning, make it a point to change out of pajamas to keep motivated, and set a routine that involves a daily workout.
And don’t forget the importance of your desk. We have the lowdown on desk dangers — and tips to get your workplace in tiptop shape.