fit and healthy as an entrepreneurWe all know that a healthy lifestyle breeds better days, better self-esteem and a better sex life. What we take for granted is the way staying fit and healthy can help our productivity and work levels stay at an all-time high while out working, at school, or interacting with peers.

Being an entrepreneur is tough as it is – busy days filled with cell phone calls, appointments, and all the busy work.  It is a haven for unhealthiness and the eight hour work day is detrimental to us hitting the gym consistently. Here are a few things you can do during your work day to maintain your health and fitness.

1. Use your lunch for a daily run or trip to the gym.

This is often a time where most of our unhealthy habits take place during the day. With a busy day of making deals, collaborating new ideas, and meetings with your network, lunchtime usually gets rushed through and our eating habits reflect that – fast food and unhealthy food choices become the most feasible option. Instead of using your lunch break to gorge on food, go take a thirty minute jog or run, or make a trip to your gym.

Afternoon workouts fuel energetic and productive afternoons by allowing your body to get over the hump of the morning hours, and the probable crash from your early coffee.

2. If no lunch breaks, then what/when do I eat?

Of course we all have to eat at some point during the day. Since we are skipping out on our lunch break to get some physical activity in, your stomach probably hates you. Keeping some healthy snacks at your desk or with you on-the-go can help curve your hunger.

Some good examples of snacks to keep around are almonds, grapes, trail-mix, carrots, celery, low-fat yogurts, and granola. There are obviously many more ‘healthy choices’ out there for quick snacking, but this is a well-rounded list of those with the most beneficial effects.

A great book that I used for a year to help regulate my diet and began focusing on healthier food choices is the Abs Diet by David Zinchenko. This book isn’t a gimmick as it site makes it seem. It was a great informational read and the recipes for the smoothies in it are phenomenal.

3. Ditch the office chair – grab an abdominal ball.

I feel like with that heading I am about to make you very skeptical. However, when in the office, ditch your chair. Hear me out – a study showed:

    • “Sitting on an exercise ball, your body is constantly making small adjustments with the postural muscles, abdominals, gluteals and leg muscles. It is “active sitting” rather than the slumping and poor posture we develop even in ergonomic desk chairs” – About.com

With this ‘active sitting’  you are constantly burning calories during the day that otherwise you would not. The article goes on to say not to ditch your office chair immediately and jump on abdominal ball for a full day. Slowly incorporate it into your daily routine at the desk until you get comfortable enough with it for a full-time period.

These are just a few things to do to keep you the entrepreneur feeling sharp, looking good, and esteem/confidence high. Considering these are the most important aspects in maintaining an image to an investor, future partner, or advisor – these steps should be an easy and accepted alternative to your lifestyle now.

Shape up and work healthier. Being an entrepreneur isn’t just about creating the next big idea; it’s about branding and making yourself marketable – how do you want to look when that happens?

Wade Hammes is Management major at Virginia Tech with a focus in Innovation and Technology. He is the co-creator of FITnoke.com, an online network for fitness-minded individuals. Follow him on twitter – www.twitter.com/whammes