Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stand and Deliver!

A few months ago I read about the health benefits of standing, so I started standing at my desk for an hour or so at work.  After a few weeks, I increased that to standing then sitting off and on for an hour each.  Recently, I’ve been standing for most of the day, and it feels pretty good.

On the weekends, I find myself sitting in front of a computer for a long period of time (contrast that with my work where I’m now standing in from of a computer for a long period of time).  And on the weekends, I feel a little more sluggish, like I lose a step.  There’s a good chance that this weekend funk is all in my head.  Nevertheless, I think I’m going to buy a standing desk for my apartment so that when I’m goofing off and posting video game videos to my Youtube channel I’m at least getting a tiny bit of exercise.

And I’ve found that tiny bit of exercise should not be discounted.  According to several recent studies,

If you spend most of the rest of the day sitting — in your car, your office chair, on your sofa at home — you are putting yourself at increased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, a variety of cancers and an early death. In other words, irrespective of whether you exercise vigorously, sitting for long periods is bad for you.

Yikes.  With that in mind, I kicked my search for a standing desk into high gear.  I don’t need anything too fancy.  My work has desks that can be adjusted by the press of a button, but that’s more than I need.

It looks like Amazon has a few choices.  I’ll probably start there and go to a Home Depot or Lowe’s to see if they have any standing desks.  By the end of October, I look to have a standing desk assembled in my apartment.  I’ll report back in with my results then.

The health benefits of standing versus sitting are now reasonably documented in the annals of science.  Less clear are the benefits to mood and alertness.  But there’s at least some anecdotal evidence to support standing:

Greg Hoy, 39 years old, asked for a standing desk shortly after joining Facebook seven months ago as a design recruiter. "I don't get the 3 o'clock slump anymore," he said. "I feel active all day long."

Tiffani Jones Brown, 29, said she also requested a standing desk when she joined Facebook two months ago as a content strategist, in part to keep her energy level high. "I get really tired when I sit all day," Ms. Jones Brown said. 

I feel the same way when I sit all day.  Hopefully standing for a few hours on Saturday and Sunday cures my weekend doldrums. 

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