Is Your 9 - 5 Schedule Making You Less Agile?

Written by Niamh Elisabeth McShane | 3 min read
Published on: August 1st 2017 - Last modified: February 24th, 2020

It’s Monday morning, your white knuckles are gripping the handle of your coffee cup harder than Jack gripped that dodgy Titanic door in the North Atlantic, and you’re probably shaking just as vigorously. We’ve all been there, 50+ emails filling your mind with post-weekend existential dread as your posture begins to slowly slump into a clenched, upright, keyboard wielding version of the fetal position. If extortionate levels of screen time are giving you square eyes and back pain, and your mouse-clicking hand has developed carpal tunnel, then maybe it’s time to shake off the cobwebs! That’s certainly the solution we’ve been taking here at Signavio HQ in Berlin. We spoke to our resident fitness guru, Sebastian Groh, Frontend Developer in the “Rat Pack” and our very own abs, quads, and glutes developer.

Working out at work

Sebastian’s been running a Full-Body Workout session twice a week for quite some time now, encouraging Signavians across all departments to jump on board, optimize their lunch breaks, and get agile collaboratively. So we asked him our typical Signavio question: “Why?”

“I started the Body Workout sessions initially with only 2 - 3 other participants from the “Rat Pack” development team. Interest started growing quickly as there were others in the company who wanted to use some time over lunch to get fit and to sort of click the refresh button on their brains. It wasn’t hard to get people’s buy-in to the idea as we have a pretty supportive culture here.There weren’t any barriers about working out together - we’re a pretty sporty bunch, but it’s still a mixed bag of abilities and goals! After the session, we all prepare a meal together in the kitchen and it’s normally something quite healthy, it usually includes beans and avocados and that sort of thing.”

Sounds pretty enticing! Especially the part about the avocados… Can you describe a typical body workout session, with a detailed part about the avocados?

“Sure! We start with a quick warm-up, 5- 10 minutes long, and then move to a 25 minute HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout. Then there’s always a 5 - 10 min cool down at the end. All exercises are performed using your own body weight. If you wanted to compare it with BPM, it’s kind of like harnessing the power that’s already there in your team, that you maybe didn’t even realize you had. We bring everyone together and each person focuses on their own strengths in a supportive team setting - although the food part is where the real collaboration comes in, the exercise is more like getting agile, continuous process optimization if you will.”

Nice comparison! So Sebastian, you were into competitive athletics for 10 years and have recently completed a license to work as a fitness trainer, not to mention your interest in nutrition and sports science literature. Do you have any useful tips for people reading this blog who want to improve their physical health at work?

“Absolutely! It's important to take notice of your posture and to do a few exercises every so often that improve your mobility and focus on your back and your spine. This is so important as most people are sitting at a desk all day when they work. Even better, is mixing up standing and sitting. Get up and walk around a bit and try to work at a standing desk, a combination of standing and sitting is much better than one or the other. Then, best of all - start an office sports group! It’s so good for your mental and physical well-being to get active and it’s a great way to build a good team spirit with your colleagues. You can achieve a lot in a short amount of time; 3 workouts a week is a very good foundation, and you can get them in during your lunch break as well as on the weekend!”

Thanks Sebastian! Here’s to a fit and healthy office culture!

So there you have it, if you need a quick break from the swirling sea of emails, the icebergs of Monday moodiness and the foggy mist settling over your normal brain functions, then get moving! Go for a quick walk, take a well-deserved stretch and why not ask your colleagues if they’d like to join you? You spend so much of your time worrying about the agility of your organization and the optimization of your operational processes, why not give your own health a few minutes of your time as well?

Published on: August 1st 2017 - Last modified: February 24th, 2020