Around the Wagon: The stand-up desk

I have dealt with lower back pain for a number of years. I exercise regularly, but the combination of an old injury and genetically having very tight hamstrings causes me to sometimes have a hard time sitting for long periods of time.

The first stand-up deskA few months back I was watching TV, and they (I believe it was 20/20) were talking about stand-up desks. I am one to be adventurous, so the next morning at work I decided to make my very own stand-up desk. After looking all through the offices and warehouse here at the Wagon, I came across boxes of folded USPS boxes. I stacked them two boxes high at each corner of my desk and, voila, I had myself a stand up desk!

To finish it off I put large garbage bags over the boxes so you couldn't tell that I was using boxes.

Classy, I know.

It has been more than four months and I am still going strong, although I did end up having a stand-up desk built. I no longer had to feel weird when people came into Bikewagon and saw my makeshift masterpiece.

I will not bore you with any physiological benefits of standing, but I do believe that we were not meant to plop down on our butts for hours at a time. Here are the top reasons why you should trade in your desk for one a little bit taller:
Bruce's new stand-up desk

  1. Standing burns more calories than sitting. Beside the countless articles and info online that can be found about the health benefits of working at a stand-up desk, personally I have just felt healthier and more motivated to stick to all of my fitness goals.
  2. A stand-up desk can be portable. If you want don't want to commit to standing all day, you can have a portable desk that you can put on top of your desk. Then when you would rather be sitting, simply remove it and put things back the way they were.
  3. Working at a stand-up desk will improve your productivity and mood. At least it has for me; I no longer have the pain in my lower back and the need to interrupt what I am doing to get up out of my chair.
  4. You will have more energy working at a stand up desk. If you don't believe me, try falling asleep at one. I think this one is closely related to number three.

Don't get me wrong, there are a few negatives, and you might find that you actually hate it. It did take me about a month to get over slight foot pain, so I would suggest a nice comfy pair of shoes or a mat. It's probably a good idea to ease into standing. I am still somewhat of a newbie as I have only been doing the stand-up desk for four months, but I have loved it and don't think that I am ever going back.