4 speedy lunchtime workouts

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There’s no better way to ward off the afternoon doldrums than going for a lunchtime run. “Getting out for as little as 15 minutes can reduce stress, stimulate creativity and activate hormones associated with positive thinking...not to mention help keep you fit,” says coach Jeff Galloway. “Aim to escape the office every other day.” Here’s how to make the most of your midday break.

1. Upstairs, downstairs

For five minutes, walk up and down one to two flights of stairs. Then run a floor and walk a floor (mix up going up and down). Walk for 30 seconds, then run for two floors; walk for 30 seconds, then run for three floors. Cool down. On your next stair run, repeat the sequence twice. Each workout, add a set.

2. Company rules

You’ll improve faster if you run with a friend. Warm up, then do 30 seconds running/30 seconds walking for five minutes. Then take the lead and dictate the pace: run for one to three minutes and walk for a minute. Switch roles. Repeat two to four times. Add a segment each workout. Over time, extend the distance or speed of each repeat. 

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3. Walk this way

No shower at your workplace? A moderate workout with a long cool-down won’t leave you too sweaty. Warm up by walking for five to 10 minutes. Then alternate 30 seconds running at a very easy pace with 30 seconds walking. Cool down with a 10-minute walk. Use a towel and wipes to freshen up. 

4. Active desktop

Do a mini circuit routine in the office to strengthen your core and lower body. Standing, place your hands on the edge of your desk and do 10-15 ‘press-ups’. Then do 10 lunges per leg. Resume the press-up position but hold it for 10-15 seconds as a plank. Repeat the entire sequence two to four times.