work and exercise

Fitting Exercise Into A Busy Working Week

work and exercise

Alarm. Up. Dress. Breakfast. Drive. Work. Lunch. Work. Drive. Home. Dinner. Television. Bed. This is essentially the bones of my working day and for many more the schedule for it. Exercise doesn’t appear to have much room in this schedule but is that by choice? Routine? Excuses? Or indeed a choice to routinely make excuses?


It’s amusing how we prioritise. After exercise we feel great and promise ourselves will keep it up, but more often than not it becomes a neglected promise. In direct contrast how many of us, have one too many at the weekend and swear the following morning never again and, of course we invariable do. We are so focused on now that it’s easier to make excuses and do the easiest option. Perhaps, its time to exchange, excuses for exercise.


Sacrifice some sleep; exercise will make you more energetic, and it will help you sleep better, so you won’t miss the shut-eye. Walk, cycle or play sports with your friends instead of meeting them for coffee or lunch. Spend some of your lunch hour walking. For example when you go for you lunch I don’t go to the closest most convenient premises but to the one ten minutes away, this gives you a good twenty minutes walk, enough time to eat and time to get some fresh air. Being creative makes exercise happen.


When exercise is considered a chore, an additional workload to be completed everyday then it is doomed for failure, because unlike work you don’t have a manager to drive you on and ensure you meet your targets. Therefore, a great motivational tool is to exercise as part of a team. Letting myself down is often easier than letting a team down and this can be the crucial push into activity.


Even at work there are opportunities to exercise, simple things like using the stairs instead of the elevator, meeting colleagues and clients in person rather than phoning them and even just walking around the office to stretch your legs. These are not strenuous activities and can be easily incorporated into the working day with a little conscious effort.


Commuting to work for many is the biggest barrier to exercise but again a little creativity goes a long way. Just park a little further from work or take the longer route from the bus/train station. Not only is it good to stretch your legs after a commute but isn’t it more comfortable than the hectic rush for public transport and of course its free.


For perspective, remember that thirty to forty-five minutes represents just two to three per cent of your day. And considering exercise makes you more alert, energetic, and healthy you don’t have to be an Einstein to see that exercise matters – not relatively, but absolutely.


Posted by Paul McEnroe, Past Sigmar Galway Office on 28 November 2017

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“K-shaped” Workforce Patterns Begin to Emerge with Major Spike in Flexi-labour

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The latest data from Sigmar Recruitment’s Employer Sentiment Report suggests that most companies plan on hiring more contingent labour in order to deal with the extended market turbulence. Having surveyed 1000 Irish based companies, 91% of respondents said they are more likely to hire temps or contractors than before COVID-19. Commenting on the results, Barry Rudden, Director, Sigmar Recruitment says; “This may signify a fundamental shift in how workforces will be constituted moving forward as employers are wary of future market shocks. Whilst demand has rebounded since March, companies just don’t know how the market will react to a possible second wave of infections, topped with Brexit fears, so there are still challenges ahead for organisations and as a result they are hesitant to commit to permanent hires.” One third of all companies surveyed said it was likely or highly likely that they would increase the % of temp/contract staff they already engage. “This is the norm in early stages of an extended recovery. Seeing this trend emerge at polar ends of the labour market is indicative of a new K-Shaped labour market.” says Rudden. He adds; “When viewed, in parallel with the explosion of the gig economy in the last decade, we now see increasing demand for temporary or contract workers in most white-collar industries, not just the traditional area of office/administration roles.” Companies surveyed expected requirements for temp/contract talent to be highest across IT, engineering & life sciences, accountancy, and HR along with office/administration. Hiring on a temporary or contract basis gives organisations an opportunity to ‘try before you buy’ i.e. hiring initially on a temporary basis before converting to permanent. “Given companies’ uncertainty at present, this model is potentially a perfect solution that enables businesses to ramp up and meet demand while the future looks uncertain. At the same time, it enables jobseekers to find work quickly. In our corresponding survey of 3500 candidates, the majority said they were more likely to consider temp or contract work than before the COVID-19 pandemic struck,” says Rudden. Flexible labour in demand at polar ends of the economy; powering growth in recovering sectors and offering interim cover for harder hit sectors 91% of employers plan to expand contingent worker numbers as increasing uncertainty looms 82% of candidates would consider temp or contract positions if given more flexibility, like remote working Further, 82% of candidates said they would be more likely to consider temp or contract work if they were offered flexibility, such as remote working. This is significant change in attitude considering 60% of respondents had not worked in a temporary or contract capacity in the past two years. Rudden adds, “It likely not only reflects the impact of the current crisis in terms of people having lost employment but perhaps a wider acceptance that flexibility may be required as we move forward.” Whilst market uncertainty prevails, what is certain is that we are in the midst of an extended period of transformation in the workplace with blended workforces i.e. a mix of permanent and temp/contract staff perhaps becoming the norm. “Prior to COVID-19 there were already several examples of major multinationals with a significant proportion of staff engaged as agency temps or contractors. We predict an increase in such models being used by other businesses going forward,” says Rudden. For a copy of the report, contact Barry Rudden on +35314744612 or email