What a difference a stand up desk has made for me.
If you’re like me and spend a lot of your workday sitting at a computer, then you should really consider a stand-up option for your desk. It will make a huge difference in your everyday, as it did mine. Here is my story of why I bought a stand-up desk and how it made a difference.
Each workday, literally about five minutes after sitting down I would get a nagging pain in my back right below my rib cage. It was terrible and it seemed that no matter how I positioned myself it would not go away. So thinking it was a pulled muscle, I took ibuprofen to alleviate the pain.
The pain didn’t go away and almost got to the point where I was about to make an appointment with a doctor when I listened to a podcast by Michael Hyatt talking about the benefits of a standup desk. So I wondered how much I was sitting throughout my work week and took a look at the real picture of how much I was sitting.
Here’s what I saw when I took a hard look at my sedentary life:
|Task||Stand Time||Sit Time|
|Get up and ready for work||45 min|
|Drive to work||30 min|
|Walk from car to office||15 min|
|Sitting at my desk to work||20 min||7 hrs 40 min|
|Drive home||30 min|
|Walk on treadmill 2-3 days/week||30 min|
|At home after work||1 hr||3 + hrs|
|Bedtime laydown/sleep||8+ hrs|
I must say, that I was mortified at how much I was sitting and/or being sedentary. This was HORRIBLE when I looked at the number of hours I was sitting EACH workday. On the weekend I was much more active but FIVE out of the SEVEN days, I was sitting around like a SLUG. No wonder my back was killing me and I was tired all week long.
After seeing my inactive work lifestyle, I thought, why don’t I try standing more during my work days to see if it will help my back? So I made a small make-shift platform with a computer monitor stand, a tissue box and a pad of paper. I put the tissue box on the monitor stand and set the pad of paper on it to meet the right height for mousing with my wrist otherwise it was really sore.
I noticed my back pain decreased and my energy level went up in the first 24 hours. Wow! After a couple days of this, I shared the great news with my husband and we decided it would be best for the health of my body to invest in a standup desk. I knew it wouldn’t be good for me to stand ALL day with no sitting breaks so we decided to get a hydraulic standup desk that sits on top of my desk. This allowed me to have cycles of standing for one hour and sitting for 15 minutes through my work day.
I went with the Veridesk and I bought their floor mat to go with it. I want to say that I DO NOT get money from them to endorse their product. They had what I wanted and I ordered it through Amazon. The shipping was fast and I literally took it out of the box and began using it. No assembly required. A+++ I’ve been using it over a month now and LOVE it and their floor mat. I generally stand on the mat bare foot while working and have not used shoes with it.
I’ve also decided to take it a step further and create a DIY desk for my treadmill with a board, two eyelets and a bungee cord. Click here to see how this works. I keep my pace slow while working (around 2 mph) but the point is that I’m not sitting and I’m keeping my body moving. My goal is to have two 30 minute sessions per work day on my treadmill when I’m working from home.
So in wrapping up:
- Do a quick evaluation of your typical work day – stand vs. sit time.
- Before investing in a stand up desk, make a simple make shift one to test it out for a couple days.
- Build up your stand up time slowly. Start with 15 min standing per hour. Then gradually increase your stand time and decrease your sit time to a balance that works for you.
- Don’t forget the floor pad to stand on. Don’t skimp on this or you’ll regret it. This pad will help decrease the impact on your feet and you don’t want to be super sore.
Did you notice a difference when you increased your stand time when working?
How many hours were you inactive when you did your self evaluation?
Any questions you want to ask me about my Stand Up desk experience?
(I welcome your response in the comments.)