DIY Treadmill desk

Ever since reading Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives (adlink) I was obsessed with getting a Treadmill desk. They’re pricey though…

So because I have a standing desk at my office from before, I came up with the idea of taking mum’s unused low-budget treadmill she’s been wanting to get rid of for years and have it under my desk. Voila – a DIY treadmill desk!

I dragged the whole thing to work on a day this summer when I knew no one else would be in the office to “test it out” without having to explain to everyone about my weird idea. I later realised my “weird” idea is a real thing (adlink)! You don’t have to buy a whole one-unit treadmill desk (adlink) you can just buy a treadmill that fits under your desk. There are special ones without the handle thing that fits under any desk.

And the real ones have a special type of motor in them that are better for this type of use – slow speed for a long time. And quieter with ability to control it from above your desk or through an app. But hey, who needs to be that fancy anyway right…

Anyway my solution worked fine! I could focus (better) when working, maybe writing becomes a bit shakier, but I am a programmer so I’m suppose to type with my keyboard anyway and that is no different from sitting. Also I have a track ball mouse so there’s no issue there either, just have to move it a little to the side compared to when I’m sitting.

So it works fine and I can work just as well while while doing it. But WHY do I do it? Well one reason is the same as standing up while working – getting a more varied work position instead of sitting and slouching for 8 hours.

Standing up and working burns about double the calories as sitting. So slowly walking while working burns even more calories. According to my Google Fit my hour of walking today 1.8 km/hr burnt just over 300 calories and added 6000 steps to my step counter! Compare that to an hour sitting and working which I got a Google search figure of about 100 calories/hour.

I’m busy reading a book by a Swedish author called The real happy pill (adlink). Last night I was reading about standing desks and it’s effect on children in particular. And yeah, a treadmill desk can’t possibly be worse! So what he’s saying is that the benefits of standing while working goes far beyond burning more calories, the brain actually works better. A study done on 7th graders showed that the benefits of standing while working was better concentration, improved memory and better working executive control (making decisions).

Who doesn’t want those benefits?!

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