I recently made the switch to a standing desk, because I swear I could feel my muscles atrophying when I was sitting for 8 straight hours at work.
Has anyone had a positive experience with standing desks and weight loss? My body has not adjusted well to the office lifestyle and I find it much harder to lose weight now that I am more sedentary than I was at my previous job (farming apprentice). Is a standing desk my ticket to faster results?
Thanks for your help!
I think we're meant to move, not sit or stand for prolonged periods of time. At least one ergonomic group (at Cornell) suggests that standing desks only set you up for the kinds of issues folks who stand all day have.
I think trying to work more activity into your day is the key. For example, I'm doing it for part weight loss and part back rehab, but when I go to the loo, I don't just take the 75 steps from my office ... I take the longer route to the other side of the floor, walk down one floor, walk around to the other stairway and then walk back up to my floor. A little thing, but doing that 2 or 3x a day has seemed to help me quite a bit.
And now I'm heading off to my lunchtime walk. Exercise and vitamin D FTW!
It might help, but I do think that moving on regular intervals would probably have a larger impact. Personally, I find that my productivity takes a major hit when I spend the whole day at my standing desk, UNLESS I am mostly doing readings, which I do at the same pace standing as sitting. Something like calculus, statistics, graphing, those kinds of heavy-on-the-writing activities I am just much faster at when sitting.
My set up has gotten pretty elaborate: old book shelf for standing (where I do all my reading), little desk for written work (with just a kitchen chair, but I hope to upgrade someday), white board for interactive work (drawing graphs etc), and a good amount of floor space for pacing and movement. Moving between all these activities has really allowed me to prolong my concentration, and I think is beneficial for just switching it up.
I pace whenever I'm on the phone (chance to move), pace when I'm stuck on problems, do calf raises regularly (careful, easy to go overboard then not be able to touch your heel to the ground the next day, haha), do wall push-ups (little more low key in an office setting), do chair dips (the only good thing about sitting in a kitchen chair) and stretch a LOT. I can't sit still in a chair with my heels on the floor- I'm mostly cross legged, so I stretch out my sides, spine, and neck regularly.
I began standing in December, about 2 months into my initial foray into paleo. I lost a lot of weight very quickly in the beginning, and while I cannot say with certainty that I would not have lost just as much while sitting at work, the extra ~300 calories burned a day (without taxing me enough to stimulate over-feeding, like chronic cardio does) probably did not hurt my weight loss effort at all.
Other benefits included:
I do think the best option may be to have a standing desk with a tall chair. At least then, you can choose to sit, or to stand, however you feel. With a sitting desk, there's pretty much only one way to use it. Choices can be good.
Edit: I forgot to mention something important (for me at least). I found it worked out better to have an anti-fatigue mat on the floor upon which to stand, then doff my shoes. Shoes totally change where on my feet I put my weight, and as a result, where in my body I find my center of gravity. Shod, my weight goes on my heels, and everything starts to hurt. Unshod, I'm on the balls of my feet, with my back aligned in a more favorable (and comfortable) position. This shift happens of its own accord--I do not purposely focus on it.
I have a call with HR today to beg and plead for a standing desk or a swopper chair. When our director asked why I said "because I'm dying".
Standing desk, fold up stool incase you get tired/ stiff from standing. The stool will require some sort of posture still. Set alarm or just take notice and every 15 or 30 min or something move a bit. Maybe on the 30's you do 20 air squats or lunges and on the hours do a couple pushups or something. Keeps you moving and should help avoid the one place problems of standing OR sitting.
Promoting leanness? Ya I'd think so. It's much easier to sit all day than to stand in one spot all day. You gotta move if you're standing at some point.
I've been using a standing desk on and off for about a year now, and have just constructed a rather large on desk raiser - a desk on a desk.
I think the general benefits I get from this is not so much the standing itself, but what standing makes me do. I move around a lot more, helped by having some good music. I sit for phone calls, and take more breaks sitting down. This is good. The thing about sitting in front of a computer screen is that it's not just the sitting, it's the staring at a screen all day. More breaks, also breaks me from the screen.
This is why I have moved to the more permanent solution. You can see it here if you want: http://www.perspicuousasmud.com/2012/04/04/standing-desk
I agree, man is not evolved to sit, or even just stand all day long. However, being on your feet will give you the opportunity to move more often. I know that's the case with me, as I stand at this desk (my kickstarter project) http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/mcpace/stand-up-desk-kit-the-easiest-way-to-stand-while-w.
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