A few years ago articles started popping up about the many health hazards of sitting. The one that caught my eye proclaimed "Sitting is the New Smoking". I was alarmed! I had given up smoking 10 years earlier and was feeling healthier than ever, only to find out that my job could be doing just as much harm as cigarettes to shorten my life! According to the Mayo Clinic research links sitting for long periods of time with obesity, metabolic syndrome, increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease and even cancer.
Except for an occasional job site visit, all of my work is done at a desk and most of it at my computer.
I needed a solution right away!
I got online and discovered standing desks, treadmill desks, and desktops that can move up and down depending upon whether I felt like standing or sitting to do a task. The problem was, the cost was really high and I didn't know if I would like standing to do my job. I needed to test this idea before investing a lot of money.
I came across an article that described modifying a cheap Ikea end table to use as a standup desk. The "desk" sits on top of a desk or table and is about 2' square. There is a keyboard shelf at the right height and the monitor is at eye level which are good office ergonomics. There it was, the perfect test for less than 30 bucks. http://iamnotaprogrammer.com/ikea-Standing-desk-for-22-dollars.html
I ordered the parts, followed the instructions in the article and took the desk to work.
There were a couple of things I discovered in the first week.
My experiment started in November of 2013 and I'm still using the "test" Ikea desk almost three years later. I stand all day. I've added another Ikea end table on each side of the "desk" so I can use two monitors and still have desk space. My total investment was under $200. I no longer have back pain or neck stiffness at the end of a day from working hunched over a laptop, and don't have to worry when I read articles about the harmful effects of sitting all day.
Just the other day I saw a headline that said sitting all day negates the positive effects of other exercise. Without my stand up desk, that would have really had me worried. Don't get me started on the hazardous effects of worrying!
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