6 Ways To Get Active During Your Lunch Break (Even If You’ve Only Got 10 Minutes)

In Partnership with Red Bull

Step away from your desk. We repeat, step away from your desk...

Is your 60 minute lunch break an oasis of calm and nourishment in the middle of the day?

Probably not.

The average Brit scuttles back to their desk after just 31 minutes while loads of us don’t leave at all. But lunchtimes are the perfect time to squeeze in a bit of exercise.

That’s why we’ve teamed up with Red Bull to champion their new AWOL (Active When On Lunch) initiative, with the soul aim of helping us get up from our desks, out of the office and make actual use of our lunch break and do something more invigorating than scrolling through Instagram for an hour.

For the month of May, Red Bull are hosting a variety of free lunchtime fitness sessions in their London HQ in Covent Garden. Not in town? Don’t worry they’ve got you covered – head on over to the AWOL page in order to find more inspiration, motivation and information.

‘Lunchtime is a great time to workout,’ says Un1t PT Gary Williams, one of the expert trainers taking part in the AWOL initiative.

‘It takes people’s minds off of work tasks and can help with stress, which can then lead to people being more productive when returning to the office in the afternoon.

‘It also forces you to be efficient with your workout as you don’t have time to waste in the gym when you’re due back in the office.’

In fact, a study by Bristol University found that exercise at work can help employees feel more “productive, happy, efficient and calm”.

And Birmingham Uni experts have found that as little as five minutes of exercise after working or learning can help us to retain those memories.

Oh, and Gary says that we often make better food choices after exercising(!). So, what exactly are you supposed to do in our precious break?

If you’ve got 10 mins…

Find some stairs in your building, stick on a playlist and walk up and down for the duration of your break. Anything to get that blood pumping a little.

If you’ve got 15 mins…

Try one of Red Bull’s 15 minute workouts, which have been cleverly designed to pack a punch in a small time frame. Find a patch of grass, put your mobile to good use and try this real time HIIT workout by PT Bethany Duckworth, which will work wonders to improve your overall fitness and core strength.

If you’ve got 20 mins…

20 minute is actually a pretty decent amount of time for a mind-clearing stroll.

It takes around 20 minute to jot up around 2,000 steps so add in the walk to and from the tube and you could be halfway to 10,000 target before you’ve even stepped inside a gym.

If you’ve got 40 mins…

Gary recommends doing a super speedy treadmill interval session. 20 second sprints followed by 40 minute jogs for as long as you’ve got. That could just be 15 minutes. Less is sometimes better!

If you’ve got 60 mins…

There’s plenty of time for a decent weights session.

Alternatively, find a Pilates class which will get you working your deep core without necessarily requiring you shower before heading back into the office. Most classes are about 45 minutes, so that should give you enough time to throw on your office clothes and get back to your desk.

Trust us, there’s nothing like it for banishing the 3pm crash.

Feeling inspired? Sign up to get AWOL

Throughout May, Red Bull is offering a range of high quality fitness classes – from rowing to pilates; high intensity interval training (HIIT)  to mobility drills– in their London HQ for those who pledge to get AWOL over their lunch hour.

Taking up residency in Red Bull’s Convent Garden HQ, the free ticketed lunchtime classes are all designed to get you out from under your desk and get your blood pumping. All AWOL classes are free to enter, but you must be signed up first as spaces are limited to 25 per session.


Book your free lunchtime session, plus get tips, inspiration and claim your complimentary can of Red Bull here


Reading now