indian man having coffee in one hand while reading a newspaper

With work demands piling up at the office, employees may often choose to opt out of their lunch hour and stay in instead. Whether it is eating hastily while hunched over at the desk, rummaging the pantry for more coffee or instant noodles, or skipping lunch altogether, foregoing your daily break can soon become a bad habit.

Not only is it unrealistic to expect anyone to work for eight hours in a row, taking a break to recharge is also necessary to ensure that you remain productive and healthy at work. Here are some bright timeout ideas for your next lunch break, helping you to return to the office refreshed and ready to power through the rest of the day!

Related: How Much to Eat at Each Meal?

Midday Break Ideas

multi ethnic asians high fiving each other 

Only have an hour? Do not fret! These quick activities are easily squeezed into your lunch hour. Plus, they give you quick boost in energy too!

  • Get some sunshine and Vitamin D outdoors

    Produced in your skin, Vitamin D is also called the “sunshine” vitamin and is important for the development of bones, fighting diseases such as flu and heart disease and keeping depression at bay. A little goes a long way, as all you need is just 10 minutes a day of sun exposure. Unfortunately, modern urban living means we often spend more time indoors or under the shade, which could limit our daily dose of Vitamin D. For your next lunch break, why not take a walk outside and get a little Vitamin D perk?

  • Bond with colleagues, have a laugh

    Because we spend so much time working with our colleagues, it is a pity if we do not develop meaningful relationships with them outside of work. Bonding with your colleagues over a healthy lunch and having a laugh over non-work topics can be very fulfilling and the benefits can even spill over when it comes down to actual work. Getting to know colleagues in other departments that you seldom interact with can also help you appreciate the organisation as a wider whole.

  • Eat a healthy meal at a HDP partner

    Having one hour for lunch does not mean that you have to scoff down the nearest and greasiest meal. Expand your dining options and eat at a Healthy Dining Programme (HDP) partner for a healthier option. HDP partners are committed to serving meals that are less than 500 calories and currently there are almost 500 partners in Singapore island-wide to choose from.

Related: 5 Healthier CBD Lunchtime Dining Options

  • Go for a mini workout

    If you are up for it, hunt down the nearest gym near your workplace for a quick workout. Or, grab a colleague and find an empty room in the office to do a workout or yoga sequence available on YouTube. 20 minutes is all you need to get in an effective toning, and fat-blasting workout, so there is no excuse to not fit one in and even have time to freshen up after.

    Get active:

asian woman looking out the window as she sips on a drink 
  • Let go of tech

    With so many gadgets and screens surrounding our daily lives, why not use your lunch break as an opportunity to go tech-free? Peel your eyes away from the screen and give your mind a much-needed break. Instead, try attending a short workshop such as flower arrangement or qi gong. Taking some timeout to challenge your brain in other ways can be refreshing and rejuvenating for your mind and soul.

  • Catch a nap

    Had one too many late nights? Take a power nap to get a quick boost in energy[1] and to supplement your lack of nocturnal sleep. Just 10 minutes is enough for a quick recharge, without grogginess, although if you can afford 60 minutes, you’ll benefit from increased memory retention too. Try skipping the caffeine and opt for a power nap instead.

Stuck in the Office?

young asian woman writing on a document while listening to music

If you cannot afford the hour out of the office, even taking a 15-minute break can help refresh and recharge your senses. Read 8 Quick Things You Can Do To De-Stress Right Now to get some ideas for a timeout in the office.

So the next time a colleague calls you out for lunch, put down your mobile phone and take up the offer — your mind and body will thank you in the long run.

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References

  1. Soong, J. (2011, Nov 29). The Secret (and Surprising) Power of Naps [Website]. Retrieved December 2016 from http://www.webmd.com/balance/features/the-secret-and-surprising-power-of-naps#