Stand Up Desk

Oh Florida humidity, you are so fabulous. This morning my run with Sadie was hot and humid.

Whenever I set out for a run in the summer in Florida, I know to expect to feel more sluggish than usual and today was no different. Despite the thick, moist air, Sadie and I had a good time. I was equipped with a rockin’ playlist and just zoned out for most of the run.

We ended up knocking out five miles and it felt good to shake out my legs before work.

Breakfast

Breakfast this morning centered around almond butter.

almond butter honey

I topped a toasted whole wheat English muffin with almond butter and a drizzle of honey.

English muffin with Almond butter

Plus a banana on the side!

banana

Stand Up Desk

Last night, Ryan and I had plans on the side of town by Ryan’s work, so I met up with him at his office before he was done for the day. I’ve been inside of Ryan’s work building a few times before, but he recently changed offices and I had never seen his brand new desk!

Stand Up Desk

Ryan now has a stand up desk at work! Pretty cool, huh? He also has an extra tall chair to use when he wants to sit, but he seems to really enjoy standing up.

After reading the book Drop Dead Healthy, I told Ryan all about the author’s stance on prolonged sitting. (You can read my full review of the book here if you are interested.) In the book, A.J. Jacobs writes, “We weren’t built to sit. According to Harvard professor John Ratey, our Paleolithic forefathers walked eight to 10 miles a day. Our grandparents expended an average of 800 calories a day more than we do. Even regular gym-going cannot fully undo the harm of sitting.”

At my former job, I sat at a computer for the entire day. I would try to get up once an hour to get something to drink, eat a snack or go to the bathroom, but there were definitely times that I sat for hours without stretching my legs. I hated that feeling and it definitely made me look forward to our evening walks with Sadie when I got home. I wanted to move!

Question of the Morning

  • Does your job require you to sit for a long period of time? Do you do anything to break up the sitting?
  • If you could work from a stand up desk, would you want to?

Comments

  1. says

    I’m a teacher, so I pretty much stand up and walk around all day.
    My husband, though, sat at a desk all day and a few months ago requested a stand up desk. I thought he was crazy cause after spending each day standing up with kids, I’d love to sit down. Don’t we always want the opposite?!

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  2. Sara says

    I’m a teacher so do a lot of standing. The one thing I miss about my all day desk job was wearing super high heels. Now I wear grandma shoes. Also with teaching I’m always moving and can often get sweaty! At my desk job I was always cold lol

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    • Cassie says

      I am a kindergarten teacher and I totally agree! Ill still wear wedges or a heel from time to time but I definitely invested in some cute flats and flat sandals ;) I also agree with the sweaty part! Ha, I crank my air down to 72 (as low as it goes) sometimes…haha it happens! ;)

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    • says

      I completely understand! I teach too, and although I’m usually sitting from time to time for teaching small groups, a majority of the day is spent up and moving around the room. I love it…even as a little girl, I could never sit still! And I feel ya on the flats. During the winter it’s better because I can get away with wearing cute, flat boots. Otherwise it’s ballet flats or flat sandals. Every now and then I can do wedges. My kids get used to me chunking the shoes sometimes though. Oops! ;-)

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      • says

        I used to be a teacher too. Taught Pre-K, Kindergarten, and 2nd grade. Besides working with the kids, of course, I miss all the movement throughout the day. Now, I work from home and if I’m not careful, I’ll end up sitting for long periods of time especially when I get engrossed in something and am intent on getting everything finished.

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  3. says

    My previous employer was a really green, health-conscious company and would allow employees to have standing desks if they asked for them. One of the attorneys that I worked with had one, and he seemed to really like it. Personally, I think I’d get tired standing up all day, but if Ryan has a chair that he can use, that’s pretty cool! My coworker just had to sit in a normal chair and then reach his arms up to try to get to his computer. It’s pretty funny now that I think about it.

    I sit all day at work, but I try to go downstairs for water (we don’t have an elevator), go out for a walk in the afternoon when I have time, or do some otherwise healthy activity.

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  4. says

    When I was working at an office I definitely felt the effects of sitting down all the time, so I always switched it up by standing up (I had the whole place to myself anyway) and stretching my legs and doing lunges or something to loosen up when there weren’t customers/clients around. It really helped! :)

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  5. says

    I teach dance classes and gymnastics classes so if I am at work I am definitely not sitting! Honestly standing is relaxing for me because most of the time I’m moving around, flipping kids over or jumping or showing dance steps- so I never feel too inactive!

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  6. says

    I have a desk job and I hate sitting all day! I work for a new retirement community and we’re in a very tight office right now and there’s nowhere to walk or take a break. When we move to our actual offices, there will be a massive (hotel sized) building to walk around on breaks – I can’t wait!
    I tried to talk them into giving me a standup desk when we were still under construction but they said no :( I’d love it!

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  7. says

    As I start my post-grad job search, it’s so important for me to find a job that keeps me moving. Even if it’s a desk job, I really want to work for a company that is aware of health/fitness and makes it a priority for its employees. I can’t imagine sitting all day! I’d get wayyy too antsy!

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  8. says

    I’m a waitress so when I’m working 10+ hour days, I’d give anything to sit down! But I’m sure if I had a desk job, I’d want to be moving around. At least Ryan has a happy medium with a stand up desk and an optional chair! :)

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  9. says

    At my summer job, I end up sitting a lot. I hate the feeling of sitting too long as well!! So I have a little routine I do to get my blood flowing. Every hour or 30 minutes after 12 o’clock I do 20 squats, and 15 bicep curls on each arm with 5 lb weights.

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  10. Alison says

    I almost always opt to stand when I’m on the computer (like now!) or eating breakfast by myself than to sit. I started doing this more in the past few months and I’ve come to genuinely just like standing more. Sitting makes my butt hurt after a while anyway. ;)

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  11. Kate says

    I think it depends on your job! I have a sit/stand option desk. While the health benefits are great, I think your productivity depends on the requirements on your job. It’s really hard to focus intently and draft documents while standing I find! Almost everyone in my office sits for the better part of the day as well.

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  12. Tara says

    I switched to a standing desk over a year ago and absolutely love it! I feel great and have way more energy! I opted to go without a stool because I tend to be klutzy…but I do have an anti-fatigue mat.

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  13. says

    A stand up desk is such a good idea! I actually know a few people who have done it and they have said it’s pretty awesome. I definitely need to be more active if I’m working at home, since I tend to sit at a desk. I do try and get out and walk the dog at least three times a day, even if they’re short walks just to get outside.

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  14. says

    Wow! I’ve heard great things about stand up desks before, a coworker of ours even tried it in the office. I def like the idea of standing more…makes me wish I hadn’t just purchased a ‘sit down’ desk. I’m standing as I type this (mind you not at a stand up desk so it’s difficult lol) and I’m enjoying standing!

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  15. says

    One of my previous bosses had his own office and typical office desk but he purposely did not put a chair in his office because he didn’t want to be one of those people who sat at a desk all day. I think Ryan has a good thing going on with having the option of sitting down when he wants to, because your legs do get tired from standing in one spot for too long and it’s nice to alternate back and forth between the two.

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  16. says

    My part time job does have me sitting for most of my day. It helps that i drink about 80 oz. of water and have to get up every few hours to either refill my cup or go to the bathroom. When I do my freelance work, I get out of the house as often as I can and am usually doing several things at once.
    By the way, are you going to the Florida Blogger Conference in Orlando in September? Would love to meet you!

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  17. says

    I have a desk job, and I like it, but it can be a bit too much. I usually try to take a mid afternoon walk so I can move around a bit. I wish I had a stand up desk! Jealous of Ryan’s.

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  18. Nicole says

    Ugh – I’m stuck sitting all day. If I had my druthers, I wouldn’t mind a stand up desk. The only thing that breaks up my sitting is the fact that I drink a gallon of water (at least!) a day…..then it’s just a walk down the hall to the ladies’ room.

    Actually, if I had my druthers, I’d just have a new job. ;)

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  19. says

    I have a desk job with 3 computer screens… graphics all day every day for me. I purposely drink massive amounts of water so I’m forced to get up often. LOL! Sorry if it’s TMI!! It’s the only way I’m reminded it’s time to get up and walk around otherwise time flies and I’ve barely moved all day… YAY WATER!

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  20. Kimberly J says

    Before our new desks at work were ordered I asked for a stand up desk, because I had read about the dangers of sitting all day. I was denied. I now walk a lap around the building or do squats or pushups every once in a while. It helps.

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  21. says

    I think my boss would laugh at me if I requested a stand up desk, but I’d definitely use one. I have the usual 8 hrs in front of a computer screen job. To break it up I go on walks for my 15 min breaks and sometimes for my 30 min lunch break. It’s not much but it’s better than nothing!

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  22. says

    AJ Jacobs is fantastic. If you get a chance (and haven’t yet), you should add “The Year of Living Biblically” to your “to-read” list. It is hilarious and a really interesting perspective into modern-day Jewish and Christian culture and their biblical foundation.

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  23. says

    I work at a hospital as a nursing assistant so the majority of my workday is spent not only standing but walking/running around. It’s amazing how much it changes your mindset- I don’t think I’d do too well not being able to move all day long.

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  24. Andrea says

    I work at a university and we are all at desks, BUT a new colleague who started a month ago has his new office set up with a stand up desk! My primary work computer is a laptop and I can easily move it around so I am trying to create a space in my office where I can do both — sit and stand.

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  25. says

    I work at a computer all day and sitting for prolonged periods of time drives me crazy. One thing I try and do is take a walk when I am on calls. I plug in my headset and go. This works as long as I am not the one leading the call and have to take notes. I’ve found it to be effective.

    I’d love to work at a standing desk if I was able to. I think they are wonderful!

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  26. says

    It is a 1/2 mile walk to walk around our building. My goal is to walk it at least 4 times a day. I also walk for my 30 minutes lunch as long as the weather is good. In Michigan it isnt always so. I also try to go answer questions instead of replying via email. I also look to print thing separately since the print is all the way across the floor from me. I will make lots of trips.

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  27. Krysten says

    I now work at a desk job, definite change of pace from last summer being on my feet alllll day as a waitress. I do the same and try to get up every hour or so to walk down the hall for water or some quick stretches at my desk. And walk to different offices to talk to people, rather than emailing back and forth. By the end of the day I’m definitely ready to get up and give my eyes a break from the computer screen too. I’m intrigued to read Drop Dead Healthy, just put it on hold at the library!

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  28. Heather McClees says

    Hi!:) I work from home and made a stand up desk from a tall buffet style kitchen table and love it! I used to sit all day at work and hated it!! I’m so happy those desk job days are gone. I love my desk I use for writing but can’t sit long without getting up . Great post -!: )

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  29. says

    My husband’s job requires sitting (at a computer – IT work) all day….this past Spring, I went with him to his office and we made a makeshift standing desk. He said it took a couple of days for his feet to get used to it, but he loves it now and says that he just feels so much better!
    I always perch my computer up on our breakfast bar when I’m working/blogging at home, too – sitting for long periods of time every day definitely isn’t good for our bodies!

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  30. Sara says

    My husband just walked by as I was reading and asked why are you looking at pictures of guys and bananas!! LOL!! I love the standing desk. I am a teacher so there isn’t much sitting during my day. :)

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  31. says

    Since I’m a teacher, I’m usually up and moving around the room for a majority of the day, other than teaching small groups. I don’t know how I could ever sit for hours at a desk. I’ve NEVER been able to sit still. I remember my grandfather telling me he was going to stomp out the ants in my pants. Ha! If I did have a desk job, I’d LOVE a stand up desk. In fact, I recently bought an extra tall table that I keep in my “office” room at home. I LOVE it.

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  32. says

    You’ve had loads of teachers respond! I never realised there were quite so many blogging teachers out there! I’m a teacher too. ICT teacher at a high school and find that most of my day is actually spent sitting. Or definitely in relation to previous jobs I’ve had anyway. Obviously I walk around whilst teaching, but that only ends up being moving from one kid to the next over four-five hours each day. And then I’m sat down marking or planning for hours more after the kids have gone home again. I would love a standing desk and it would make lessons much easier to check tutorials/classlists/emails/notices mid-lesson whilst walking around the room attending the students..

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  33. AJ says

    How cool that he has a stand up desk! Unfortunately, I drive A LOT for my job, so I am sitting way too much. Guess I really should stop more and walk around!

    -AJ
    FitTravelerAJ.com

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  34. Katie says

    I have a treadmill desk. I absolutely love it. I dont end up walking all that much, because in order to do work, I have to set it at about 2.2 MPH. But, even so, I end up walking about 5 miles or so a day.

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  35. says

    I work from home 4 days a week and those days I sit a lot, but I try to get up every hour and just move. During my lunch break I head down to my treadmill and do my 30 run so that helps. When I’m in the office I move a lot more!

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  36. says

    Yay stand-up desks! I just started my job about 4 months ago, and we have desks that raise and lower, depending on if we want to stand or sit. I absolutely love having the ability to stand whenever I want. I’m guilty for not taking advantage of it enough though.

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  37. Stefanie says

    I teach so I spend my teaching time on my feet walking around. I’ll agree with one of the other teachers though in that my planning and grading time was spent sitting. When I was allowed to purchase a desk, I specifically picked one I could stand or sit at (it has multiple tiers) and a drafting chair. The chair was definitely more expensive than other comparable chairs, but I convinced my supervisors it was worth having a chair that would raise and lower to all levels of my desk. I laugh now, because I almost never get to sit in it, since my TAs use it whenever they can!

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  38. gaius gracchus says

    Standing all day can also be problematic. That is why we went with a treadmill desk. Makes all the difference in the world! We do alternate with some time sitting – it is maybe 50/50. But it feels really good to walk slowly while we work instead of just stand or sit. We forget we are walking we get so engrossed into our work on our computers.

    We got a new Multitable and we LOVE IT!!! We ordered the entire table from them, not just the base — they customized it for us, too. We checked out almost every standup desk on the market before settling on this one. They have a plethora of types of desks – something for everyone.

    Although they had models that fit over their own treadmills, we already had a high-end Precor treadmill at home. Note that most of the treadmills that come from the standup desk combos have no console in front to get in the way, but ours, just like a gym model, does. So we needed the table that goes up really high, plus we needed a more narrow table since we are further back on the treadmill due to the console. Plus, we just have small laptops so no need for a wider desk.

    They took their table from the treadmill combo and created a customized top for us. Also they were able to adjust the width.

    It fits perfectly! The inner width is 34″ between the legs, the tabletop is 36″ wide and 18″ deep. The height goes up to 54 inches!!!! Yayyyh! Finally we found one that fit our needs over our treadmill! (good luck finding one that tall, and, if you do, good luck getting the rest of these dimensions.)

    It was pretty easy to assemble, and putting things together is not my forte. We ordered the “left-handed” model, which is just having the crank on the left side, since our treadmill is up to the wall on the right side. We really appreciate a manual operation, although they certainly have electric models. I don’t want another thing to have to plug in, and it takes so little effort to crank it, why bother with electric.

    Their customer service is outstanding. Their prices are far, far better than any other desk of this quality, and especially compared to companies who are willing to customize for you.

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