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How to Lose Weight in an Office Challenge

Jan 27, 2022
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NBC’s The Office opened its fifth season with two episodes about Dunder Mifflin’s weigh-in office challenge. In the two episodes, famous Scranton Branch Manager Michael Scott worked hard to motivate his team to lose weight. Their competitors were the paper company’s other branches, all vying to be the team with the highest cumulative weight loss over a period of time. The prize? The winning branch will get an extra five vacation days for each of its employees, motivating everyone to give their best in the challenge.

While the award was already motivating on its own, Michael’s character was even keener on winning because he simply could not bear the thought of losing. He made sure that everyone under him did not eat any sweets and he wanted to be assured that all of them had the same level of commitment as he has. Dwight Schrute, Michael’s self-appointed apprentice, inserted himself in the picture and gave himself the assignment to discipline everyone, even taking his fellow salesperson Phyllis Vance to a fake client call, stole her wallet once they got there, and left her alone so she’d be forced to take the long, arduous walk back to the office. He even destroyed the office’s air conditioning system so that everyone would sweat and hopefully lose some pounds. Towards the end, after all their efforts and the popular The Office banter, they claimed defeat to another branch by just one pound.

If you are going through something similar in your office, we don’t want you to lose as the Scranton branch did. Even if it’s just a friendly competition among you and your peers, we’ll help you win towards the end.



1. Watch what you eat.

You may only lose weight if you switch to a healthy diet that aligns with your goal. It should account for 80% diet and 20% exercise. In other cases, the percentages change but our point remains the same. If your goal is to lose weight, you have to watch what goes into your body to fuel it for exercise and at the same time, also help it in burning calories. Know your body mass index to determine the right protein-fat-carbohydrate ratio for your weight loss goal. Skip, or at least cut, refined grains and added sugars. Pick healthy sources of fat like salmon, avocado, and chia seeds. Get your protein from eggs, tofu, and lean chicken breasts.

But we understand if you find counting calories overwhelming and too much work. If you are not one to do this, then just eat right, listen to your body, and don’t lose sight of your goal. You also have to be strict with yourself in terms of food you shouldn’t consume. These include junk food and anything instant. You should go around the corners of a grocery store because that’s where all the healthy food is located. You will find greens, fruits, and spices that are good for your goal.

Everybody is different so what may work for us, may not work for you. You have to customize your diet into one that meets your body’s needs.



2. Establish a workout routine.

Don’t depend on your mood when you’re trying to lose weight. Be disciplined and exercise even when it’s a difficult day. To help you with this, set a fixed time for a workout rather than randomly choosing what time you’ll work out in a day. The mood is ever-changing while the time that you set will be fixed. Your body will get accustomed to exercising at a certain time, regardless of mood or other conditions.

Since you are working on a joint goal with your officemates, why not make it a fun playdate among your colleagues by working out together. Prepare a schedule of exercises for every workday of the week. Anyone in the office is welcome to join, be it Zumba Mondays, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) Tuesdays, arm weight lifting Wednesdays, or leg day Fridays.

For someone who’s really active in working out, the ideal schedule would somehow look like this: two cardio days, two leg days, two-arm days, and one rest day.



3. Shed some pounds while on work mode.

A desk job will always be sedentary and when you’re doing focused work, you will hardly move any muscle. You become subject to prolonged sitting throughout the day.

It’s relatively easy these days to transform a sedentary job into a more active one by just adding standing desks and desk converters to your workstation. Moreover, desk bikes and under-desk treadmills offer options to burn calories and lose weight while working.

A well-loved desk bike is Flexispot’s V9 Pro Home Office Height Adjustable Cycle Desk Bike. The chair will boost your energy while you work. It has comfortable pedals that hardly make any sound so you can pedal continuously even when in meetings or merely talking to your colleagues. The bike comes with a calorie tracker to monitor your progress and a customizable cardio with adjustable resistance levels. The height of the seat can be adjusted according to your preference and you may also use the removable keyboard tray anytime you need it. Customers have testified that using the bike every day at work helped them lose the unwanted weight. It was easier to be consistent with the practice because using this desk bike doesn’t feel like a tad bit of a workout. These customers also had higher levels of energy and efficiency at work.

4. Drink ample amounts of water and get lots of sleep.

Too much is never too much when we’re talking about water and sleep. But of course, you still have to balance it out while also maximizing the situation. Most of us already work from home so drinking two to four liters a day and getting seven or more hours of sleep at night should be easier. You have to lessen your scrolling time on your phone so you could focus on your physical health and well-being.

These two are often neglected but as much as the grind is important, rest is as well.

Final Thoughts

Now all you have to do is wait for the office weigh-in! Be thankful that your company encourages you to prioritize your health and wellness. Don’t take this opportunity for granted. You and your officemates get an extra dose of motivation to achieve a common goal and your career is slowly aligning with your personal health goals. Try your best to stay consistent and give your 110%. Best of luck!