Coffee and energy drinks may help get the brain cells firing, but they're mostly a quick, temporary fix. Staying mentally sharp in the workplace is an ongoing challenge for many who reach for these artificial stimulants; however, employees can gain greater clarity by engaging body and mind. Implementing a regular physical fitness routine -- even for as little as 15 minutes each day -- can create a synergistic payoff for the fuzzy-brained worker.
Whether you're a long-distance trekker who regularly experiences runner's high or someone whose elevated mental outlook comes from boogying to the radio, you're following the same path toward greater productivity in the workplace. Job output reflects variables that, when out of balance, get in the way of giving your all. Myriad studies have illustrated the clear connection between exercise and better mood, a more tolerant attitude and higher collaborative tendencies, all of which play an integral role in your personal productivity.
Timing Is Everything
Reducing stress and improving productivity are as easy as stepping out of the office for an early afternoon bike ride or spending 30 minutes of your lunch hour limbering and toning in yoga class. Using noontime to engage in physical activity is not just a pleasurable experience but also one that handsomely rewards you. Forbes notes how midday exercise is especially invigorating when thought processes slip into low gear; breaking up the workday with a simple yet steady exercise program spikes energy and productivity throughout the afternoon.
Strength in Numbers
The idea of low to moderate exercise during the workday may really appeal to you, but lack of motivation might threaten to zap your enthusiasm. Since some of your co-workers likely feel the same way, the solution is to gather a group with similar objectives and unapologetically use one another for inspiration. Peer pressure alone, according to the Brookings Institution, is enough to drive you toward your goals.
Physiology Behind Productivity
Brain boost occurs at a cellular level where mitochondria -- known as the "power plant" component -- create the energy chemical called ATP. Mitochondria reproduce when you exercise, which in turn generates additional ATP, a domino effect that not only enables you to physically maintain your workout routine but also heightens mental capacity and productivity.
- David Woolley/Digital Vision/Getty Images