I should have probably named this blog “Desk Jockey Fitness“, as I’ve started writing not only about how to gain weight, but also common problems that people sitting behind a desk all day (aka desk jockeys 🙂 ) encounter.
If you are a person who spends most of the day hunched over a desk somewhere, or someone who spends most of the day sitting and playing computer games or watching tv, then you have probably developed some severe muscle imbalances and other types of problems that come with this type of lifestyle. Seriously think about it. Do you have bad posture? Does your back or neck feel tight? Do you sometimes feel pain in the lower back or some other parts of the body? Do you have knee problems? I would venture to bet that you probably have experienced at least some of these problems, if not all.
It is very likely that these problems are a result of sitting all day. When you adopt this type of lifestyle, then you stop using certain muscles as you usually should, these then become weak and atrophy. This then has a bad effect on other muscles in the body as well.
Your entire posterior chain becomes weak and prone to injury. When talking about the posterior chain, we refer to the different muscles in the back, the glutes, as well as your hamstrings. With less use, these muscles become weak. On the other hand, the opposing muscles become tight.
Your body has sets of opposing muscles. They have opposite functions in the body and thereby allow your body to move the way it does. For example biceps and triceps allow your arms to move in different directions. When you extend your arm, it is the triceps that allow you to do this. If you want to do the opposing movement to this, flexion, it is the biceps that are working. The same principle applies to the other sets of opposing muscles in the body.
So in order for your body to function properly, these muscles need to be in balance with each other. With a sitting lifestyle, the posterior muscles become weak, causing severe imbalances in your body and thereby many problems such as lessened mobility, pain, and injury.
If you are a desk jockey, therefore you need to take great care to lessen and eliminate these imbalances. For example one thing that you can do is to incorporate more pull exercises than push. Pull exercises work your posterior chain muscles and therefore help strengthen them and eliminate imbalances. For example for every push exercise, such as the bench press, that you have in your routine, you should have two types of pull exercises.
Here are some exercises that should be in the workout routine of every desk jockey:
You should also do a lot of stretching of such muscles as the pecs:
The above exercises and stretches should help you in fixing the imbalances that you have developed through your daily habits. There are also other exercises and stretches that you can do as well, for example any type of exercise which targets the hamstrings is good, as those are underutilized if you sit on your ass all day. Also any type of foam rolling is good, as this helps relieve tightess, as well as different stretches like the superman stretch, should also be done regularly.