Why and How I Switched to a Standing Desk

January 16, 2011

I spend about 45 to 50 hours a week working on my computer. Up until a week ago, I did that work sitting on my ever-expanding behind.

Last Monday I adjusted my desk to standing height (pictured right). I spent the week working on my feet, and I'm never going back to a sitdown desk again. Here are some questions and answers about the change.

What made you switch to a standing desk?

Ever since I wrote about a "treadputer" treadmill desk at Lifehacker in May of 2006, I've been curious about and inspired by alternative desk setups. My workday—which consists almost entirely of typing on or talking into a computer—is completely sedentary, and is a big part of the reason I'm more than 20 pounds overweight. Burning more calories while I work is a better use of that time.

Building or buying a treadputer is too expensive an undertaking for something I'm not sure I'll like or even have the space to accomodate. A standing desk, however, is doable. In July of 2010 I featured an Ikea Jerker treadmill desk, and mentioned I might just adjust my Jerker to standing height. This has been something I've been thinking about a long time.

Three straws finally broke the camel's back. First, I'm using RescueTime to monitor how I spend my time on my computer, and the weekly report made me realize how many hours I really do spend sitting down (week before last: 48). Second, I'm actively working on losing weight right now, and this seemed like a small way to add to the effort (down 12 pounds in 3 months so far). Finally, Macworld posted a guide to setting up a treadmill desk, and unequivocally recommended that you go from sitting to standing to walking, not straight from sitting to walking. That did it.

Why use a standing desk?

Two reasons: Higher calorie burn and better posture. When I'm sitting at my desk, even in a fancy ergonomic chair, I tend to slump, with my back curved and shoulders forward, which closes my chest and makes my breathing more shallow. When standing at a desk where my forearms are at a 90 degree angle on the desk surface, my shoulders go back, which makes my spine concave and opens my chest. Besides the initial foot pain and muscle aches of engaged thighs and calves, it feels great.

I didn't discuss the switch to a standing desk with my doctor, though there have been some studies about the negative health effects of excessive sitting. I'm not a medical professional, but it seems obvious that human beings aren't meant to spend 45 hours a week sitting still in a chair. Now that I'm standing, I pace, dance, and fidget a lot more freely, which is just more natural activity and calorie burn built into my day.

But don't your feet hurt?

Yes, very much. In fact, the first three days were brutal, so painful I doubted the whole endeavor. By mid-day 2, I had to sit down every hour or so. I was distracted and had a hard time focusing on anything but how much my feet hurt. At night I sat on the couch with my feet elevated. I collapsed into bed totally exhausted. I never appreciated sitting as much as I did the first three days.

Then, on the fourth day, it wasn't so bad. On day 5, I got lost in work for 2 hours before I thought about the fact that I was on my feet once. Now it's my new normal.

How did you convert your desk to a standing desk?

I have a (sadly discontinued) Ikea Jerker desk, which is designed to let you set the table to any height you want when you assemble it. So, I put in the 3 hours it took to break down my whole computer setup, disassemble the desk, and put it together at standing height. I don't have a lot of willpower, so I wanted to make the change difficult to undo. Adjusting the desk back down to sitting height will take another half-day of tooling with Ikea furniture, not something I'll want to do again any time soon. Besides, if I want to sit, I always have the dining room table. Here's what my new setup looks like:

Standing desk

If you don't have a desk that you can assemble to standing height, you can always create a temporary standing desk by putting shelves on your current desk.

Or you can use Coke cans, like Marco did:

The Coke-can standing desk on its last day

Or you can use printer paper, like tbone7770 did:

Or you can just buy a standing desk.

What about those treadputers?

They're cool, aren't they? I'm not sure if I'll ever actually make it to the point where I'm walking and computing all day. I'm going to put in several months of standing before I consider it.

What shoes do you wear?

I wear ordinary running shoes, which are fairly new, well-padded and supportive. Changing your shoes seems to help the feet, too. Sometimes I go barefoot, but I don't usually last long.

Do you stand on a soft mat? If so, which one?

Not yet, but I've ordered a squishy mat to put under my desk. It's not one of those fancy $100 kitchen gel mats, it's more like a $17 cash register/factory mat. It arrives this week. I'll let you know how well I like it.

Week 2 update: Received the mat, and can confirm it makes working barefoot or in flat shoes like Chucks easier. I've also introduced a footrest, which is nice for shifting your weight from foot to foot. I'm using an old box of unsold books for that.

Standing desk mat with footrest

Did you use any other gear in your switch to standing?

I bought a $20 monitor riser to get my screen to the right height so I'm looking straight ahead at it, not down.

How long did it take you to get used to standing all day?

I'm not entirely used to it yet, but I'm through the worst. I started Monday. By Friday I felt comfortable. Monday through Wednesday were pretty tough, though.

Do you take sit-down breaks?

Yup. I sit down at lunchtime, on phonecalls (though I'm more apt to pace), at meetings, and maybe once or twice for 5-10 minutes at other times in the day, as needed. One day I was pretty exhausted and achy so I treated myself to a sitdown beverage at the coffee shop, which was a double treat. But for the most part, I'm not even thinking about it any more.

Update: Several people have pointed out that there are health risks associated with too much standing, like varicose veins. There's usually some health effect associated with too much of anything. I don't stand ALL the time now—I sit, stand, pace, and stretch. The difference between now and before is that I used to mostly sit. Now I mostly stand.

Who else uses a standing desk?

More people than I'd realized, especially techies! Former Twitter developer and founder of BankSimple Alex Payne. Creator of Instapaper Marco Arment. Podcaster extraordinaire Dan Benjamin. Novelist Philip Roth. Former U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Lifehacker editor Jason Fitzpatrick. Now, newly, my fellow San Diego techie Mitch Wagner. Who else?

Any more questions re: the standing desk? Post 'em in the comments.

Week 2 update: Weighed in at the end of week 2 of standing desk plus eating well, and I'm down 3 pounds—no gym, just standing and doing my regular walking about town. Pretty happy about these results so far.

Yes, subsequent to writing the blog post you linked to, I made the switch to a standing desk. Been at it a few hours so far. I’m liking it a lot. My legs feel a little rubbery when I walk around the house, though.

Interestingly, a friend who’s wicked smart disputes the science of that survey about health problems sitting all day — he says the survey looks at people who sit more than two hours straight. If you get up to adjust the windowshades every hour, the study doesn’t cover you.

You and Newt Barrett pushed me over the edge on this — thanks!

How high do you have your display relative to your body? I have the top of my display about an inch below eye level. I may want to get a riser to lift it up higher. Or a phone book would probably do nicely.

Mitch Wagner [+17]
Jan 16 11 at 1:20 pm

It’s encouraging to read that you already succeeded after a week.

Do you use any “standing aids” like this http://ves.me/gre2lY ?

You did not consult with any doctors or physical therapists? Your determination to make a change for the better is admirable, but you could very well be doing more harm than good.

For example, running shoes are made for running and walking, not standing. I’m not a doctor myself, but I know that if your feet are not properly supported you will have back problems.

Secondly, Marco’s photo of the soda cans supporting the keyboard tray made me cringe. All the exercise in the world does not matter if you do not eat healthily! Maintaining an appropriate caloric intake level for your body and lifestyle can do wonders for your health. And don’t forget your green vegetables.

Anyone who sits in a chair all day at work should stand and stretch at regular intervals, perhaps every 2 hours. It gives your eyes some time to relax and focus at a different distance, it reduces strain on your spine, and it will help you refocus your mind.

The new version of the IKEA Jerker is the Fredrik: http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/60111123

petebocken [+1]
Jan 16 11 at 1:44 pm

> How high do you have your display relative to your body?

I set the monitor so that when I look straight ahead, I’m looking at the top half of the screen. At first I felt like I was looking down, and my monitor’s built-in height adjuster didn’t go high enough, hence the riser.

Gina Trapani [+195]
Jan 16 11 at 1:45 pm

> You did not consult with any doctors or physical therapists?

I didn’t. My mother was a public school teacher for 30 years, which means she spent all day on her feet. Plenty of other types of jobs involve standing all day. I didn’t think it was something I had to talk to a doctor about. I stand, stretch, move and sit throughout the day now–the only change is I mostly stand now, instead of mostly sit.

Gina Trapani [+195]
Jan 16 11 at 1:48 pm

Heavier – and wider – that I’d like to be myself, I’m going to try that out, too. Interesting to note is the dispenser box of tissue. I’ve never set up a workstation *without* an even-present box of tissue at the ready. Good luck to you, Gina. I’m on my way to set up my own standing workstation.

Robert Bigelow [+49]
Jan 16 11 at 1:49 pm

> Interesting to note is the dispenser box of tissue.

Yeah, I’m still getting over a cough/cold. Tissues are important. :)

Gina Trapani [+195]
Jan 16 11 at 1:50 pm

> Do you use any “standing aids” like this http://ves.me/gre2lY ?

No, I didn’t. I just sat down at a regular chair if I needed to, which is a nice benefit of working primarily on a laptop.

Gina Trapani [+195]
Jan 16 11 at 1:52 pm

Very interesting post, I’m inspired to at least test it out at home.

savocado [+8]
Jan 16 11 at 2:17 pm

I’ve been thinking of doing this since I first saw it on Lifehacker. I’m probably in a worse position than most as I sit in a comfy living room chair at the computer and end up leaning over to one side and having my legs curled up into me all day long. My side aches but its hard to get out of it. Sitting normally feels wrong now hehe.

So I’ve decided now after reading about your efforts to work standing up. I’m still going to chill out on the computer sitting in my comfy chair but any work I do will be standing.

Thinking about how to adjust things now. Thanks for the inspiration.

3dbomb
Jan 16 11 at 2:27 pm

I found another study about health problems from sitting, no mention of interruptions to sitting.

Mitch Wagner [+17]
Jan 16 11 at 2:43 pm

Secondly, Marco’s photo of the soda cans supporting the keyboard tray made me cringe. All the exercise in the world does not matter if you do not eat healthily!

To clarify, those cans are full, and were chosen because they were the perfect height and I knew nobody in the office would miss them.

I rarely drink any calories, and I never drink soda. There are almost always two cups on my desk: one mug of black coffee, and one giant glass of water. Both zero calories. Cutting out sugary drinks is one of the easiest ways to reduce calorie intake.

Marco Arment
Jan 16 11 at 2:46 pm

I worked for about 20 years standing in front of tables and I found that a small shelf or box (6-8 inches high) under the desk to rest your feet alternately on was a big help to relieve back stress. It should be solidly built so it can take weight and not easily shifted so you can lean into it at an angle. Just try a small wooden box placed just ahead of your feet and rest one foot and then the other as you go through the day.

I heard that you got some good shoes which helps a lot. I always used a good quality pair of cross trainers, with good cushion and lateral support.
I like your setup .

misterdevans [+1]
Jan 16 11 at 2:51 pm

I’d been thinking about doing this for a while, yet also thinking I was mad. Now I know I’m in good company!
My plan, however, is to set the height a little lower than normal – as a kung fu fan, it should be a good way to integrate practising a stance (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horse_stance) into everyday work.

stephenhau [+1]
Jan 16 11 at 3:10 pm

“My plan, however, is to set the height a little lower than normal – as a kung fu fan, it should be a good way to integrate practising a stance (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horse_stance) into everyday work.”

I laughed when I read this because I used to do the same thing (Karate student) when working at a portable table, but when I got tired from the strain I wound up in a Giraffe stance like this..
http://www.dongettyphoto.com/kenya/reticulatedgiraffe.html

misterdevans [+1]
Jan 16 11 at 3:19 pm

Nice.

The post is inspiring. I’m not sure I’ve got the personality to be the only guy standing, but I love the idea.

Robert Colburn [+1]
Jan 16 11 at 3:25 pm

Gina, I’ve been considering a standing desk for a while, and your article inspired me to seek out some options. I first checked Ikea to see if they had something similar to the Jerker, and I found the Fredrik.

http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/60111123

I was curious if the specs on this desk were similar to yours.

Kristian [+1]
Jan 16 11 at 5:29 pm

@Kristian — Above petebocken said the Fredrik is the new Jerker. The specs do look similar.

If you have 10x the $ to spend, Alex Payne says he has a Steelcase Airtouch at home. Now THAT looks like a beautiful sitdown/standup option.

Gina Trapani [+195]
Jan 16 11 at 5:56 pm

Thanks for confirming, Gina. I missed petebocken’s comment above. I think I’ll stick to the more affordable Fredrik. :)

Kristian [+1]
Jan 16 11 at 6:01 pm

I have tried this but only in a half-assed way with a laptop cart raised up high. The one thing that gets me is my arms, i.e., having no arm rests from a chair and supporting them all day long. How have you found this to be? Thanks for posting this detailed account!

Very Siberian
Jan 16 11 at 6:39 pm

@Very: Yes, the laptop cart approach didn’t work for me because I didn’t have enough room on it to rest my arms. On the big desk, my elbows and forearms are resting on the table (which curves in a bit, part of the desk that I love) as I work.

Gina Trapani [+195]
Jan 16 11 at 6:43 pm

At Fry’s I found a laptop stand that can go high enough (also for using my bicycle and trainer), but I’m trying to move to standing. I usually walk around when I’m on calls or doing many things (I have a desk and a lab table and I move between them.

What is helping me exercise while I do this is a weight vest and ankle weights and when I don’t have to touch type or do fine work, wrist weights. It started out subtle (except for the minor night leg cramps at first – but I should know better than to stretch at that time). A treadmill might be better, but I have to move and I can wear the weights for hours. And it is working – I haven’t lost weight, but I’m getting thinner. And over-the-calf socks don’t fit.

tz [+15]
Jan 16 11 at 7:56 pm

According to the specs, the Frederik is 38″ high. My standing-desk setup is 45″ high. So no Frederik for me.

Mitch Wagner [+17]
Jan 16 11 at 10:18 pm

thank you for this post! I’m using a Sit2Stand desk (electric height adjustable) and normally I sit most of the day and stand maybe 2-3 times for 20 minutes. I took the time to reevaluate my setup based on your suggestions and the main thing I was missing was the raised main monitor!
I put my aluminium suitcase (cable box) under my screen to raise it to eye level and now it’s much more comfortable to stand since I can look straight ahead at the screen. I hope I won’t need cables anytime soon :D

I’ll try to stand all day starting tomorrow (the workday is almost over here in Australia)… Thanks again!

attilaacs
Jan 16 11 at 10:30 pm

Gina,

Thanks for the post, I also have been thinking about this for some time and inspired to try. Keep up the good work and I look forward to the updates.

-Chris

cndeweese
Jan 16 11 at 11:14 pm

Used to work at a standing desk. Really helped especially regarding working the phones. Miss it a lot.

I remember we rigged some standing desks in our old office with Cardboard Boxes.

I had some counter space that I turned into my standing workstation and it did ROCK!

I have worked with Alexander Technique for years and the truth is that most wheeled desk chairs are not great for your posture. WHY?

Because you cant get your feet underneath your center and use your legs.

I trade back and forth as much as I can.

But you have reminded me of getting a standing space happening again….

ROCK ON!

DavidKamatoy
Jan 17 11 at 12:02 am

During Wednesday’s This Week in Google, I noticed Gina was standing up. Now I know why!

Winston Churchill was also known to prefer standing.

rvk
Jan 17 11 at 2:09 am

Thank you for showing how our tech lives can further our evolution without devolution. So who is going to design the easily adjustable desk for standing/treadmilling/stationary biking/sitting/cross-legged floorsitting/lying?

Marie-Therese Roux [+1]
Jan 17 11 at 5:30 am

Back in college, we had to conduct these overdrawn and boring chemical test – { just because we had to complete documentation }.

In order that we do not fall asleep, which was completely human under the circumstances, we had these single leg stools designed.

Result – comfortable and sturdy enough to sit; equally prone to slipping in case you fall asleep or slouch or over-stretch.

Currently, it is the only stool available in college lab — we get ‘blessed’ from every following batch.

LazyRebel
Jan 17 11 at 6:08 am

Looks great, Gina. I’ve been standing for some months now. My desk was originally a door on two file cabinets; I raised it up using sturdy milk crates. That, combined with an adjustable height keyboard tray, made it the perfect height for me.

Eventually in the future I may buy or build a fancier setup but for now it works fine.

I’ll echo some of the advice I gave you via Twitter when you announced your standing desk:

1. Barefoot is where it’s at. When I first started with the standing desk I wore shoes and they hurt my feet. Perhaps it was my shoes but when I went barefoot on a nice cushy mat it got rid of 90 percent of the pain.

2. Remembering to move my legs frequently got rid of the rest of it. When I’m not slowly walking in place (which I’m doing while typing this, it’s not difficult) I still move my feet and calves like I’m trying to massage the mat I’m standing on.

3. Keep your knees bent… always! Straight legs are a ticket to massive heel pain. Good standing posture involves bent knees. All you need is a slight bend to unlock the knees and evenly distribute your weight across the foot instead of driving it down into the heel.

You’ll have to keep me posted on whether or not you end up with a treadputer! Come March I’m going to keep an eye on Craigslist for barely-used New Year’s resolution treadmills to hack into a treadputer.

What about watching movies on the computer screen?

Yonathan Zarkovian [+3]
Jan 17 11 at 9:01 am

Gina,

One of the other strengths with using a treadmill at a very low speed underneath your feet is that it keeps your feet constantly moving.

A static standing position can be just as fatiguing as a static seated position. Maybe even more so because you can’t shift to recline or lean forward.

If you’ve ever noticed that you can walk for two hours with a little muscle soreness, but you can’t stand in a single position for a half hour without a back ache, knee ache and shoulder tension, it’s because when you walk, you are constantly shifting your body weight from one leg to the other, and you are distributing the weight throughout the joint’s range of motion. This motion takes pressure off of one part of the cartilage at the joint, and helps to lubricate the cartilage with fresh synovial fluid.

One thing you can do in the meantime is use your subwoofer as a foot stand, and alternate putting one foot on there to shift your weight. However, I would buy a used treadmill, and install it.

Todd

LloydChiro
Jan 17 11 at 10:02 am

Thank you for posting such a thorough review, Gina – nice to see “stand-ups” are getting back in the game after so many years.

Signalwriter
Jan 17 11 at 10:18 am

Great Post Gina! Quick question, How high is your current setup and what laptop stand are you using?

CollierSwecker
Jan 17 11 at 12:11 pm

I am a stander too. I can recommend Geekdesk although it is expensive it is a really nice. It is big and moves up and down with the press of a button.
As far as shoes I find clogs are really comfortable to stand in all day. Ask chefs who stand all day too.

russd
Jan 17 11 at 5:30 pm

I read that Hemingway used to write standing up – he’d put his portable onto of chest of drawers and that was his desk.

chambersa
Jan 17 11 at 7:00 pm

Thanks for the post, Gina. I am ready to make the move to a standing desk, but I’m sad to hear that the Jerker model was discontinued. It really sounds like the ideal desk for this purpose (especially since the Fredrik model states that it can only hold up to a 19″ monitor). Hopefully a Jerker will turn up on Craigslist in my area soon.

Out of curiosity, how high did you set the desktop surface?

Keith [+5]
Jan 17 11 at 8:39 pm

Just moved to a standing desk today. It’s something I’ve been thinking about for a while now. There are some things I still need to modify or adjust (I seriously underestimated the necessary surface area, for one). But I’ve already been in a better MOOD just from standing! So that’s a thing.

talkendo [+1]
Jan 18 11 at 11:26 am

I’ve been thinking about doing this, but I’m about to move soon and don’t want to do it twice. There’s another alternative I’m still considering though that I haven’t heard anyone mention. About ten years ago I remember listening to an interview on NPR with an author who wrote a book about sitting, and how the way we sit is bad. With a little help from my friend google, I found the book, “The Chair: Rethinking Culture, Body, and Design” by Galen Cranz. And one of the things that still sticks in my mind from that interview (never read the book) was the author’s claim that in Denmark, school students use chairs that are higher and slightly angled, so the base of the spine isn’t bent all the time and most of a person’s weight is on their feet.

Whether that is true or not I won’t pretend to know, but searching again brings up some very attractive, Danish school furniture, for example http://www.sis-as.dk/gb/html/learning/borde-stole/backup/skole_bord-stole_backup.html

Something to think about, because a true standing desk isn’t for everyone.

imanartist
Jan 18 11 at 7:11 pm

I had some back problems about a year ago and worked with an orthopedist, sports med. physician, and two physical therapists. They all recommended standing, but with the catch that I not exceed two hours a day. I asked, and they did not mean this for only me and my recovering back, but said the stress on knee and hip joints from standing all day negates any benefits, especially once problems in leg joints migrate to back problems – and they always do.

I have several co-worked who stand all day, and it’s about 50/50 whether they will be totally bent over, propped on their elbows when I walk by their offices. basically, they’re not improving their posture, at all.

I personally find that a flat or nearly flat-backed chair and concentration on my psoture makes it pretty easy to sit correctly, shoulders back, back straight, etc. Yoga helps a lot, too…

claytons [+1]
Jan 19 11 at 8:07 am

Lwt me clarify – for my work, I sit in front of a computer, so while working I cannot mvoe around. yes, there are jobs, plenty of them, where people stand all day. most of those people are allowed to move around quite a bit, but a lot of them still develop joint problems from the unnatural load. We’re not designed to spend this much time standing up in one place. our spine cannot handle the stress, and our cartalage on our joints gets inflamed, etc.

claytons [+1]
Jan 19 11 at 8:11 am

Hm, standing up to lose weight? That’s almost as good as sitting down to lose weight ;)

Sterlingwit [+10]
Jan 19 11 at 1:37 pm

The lowdown (literally) on my Yoga Geek Desk, freshly blogged at bit.ly/yogageekdesk.

Marie-Therese Roux [+1]
Jan 20 11 at 6:00 am

Gina, how much of your day would you say you spend standing, and how much sitting now, as compared with before?

Mitch Wagner [+17]
Jan 20 11 at 11:49 am

@Keith: I set the table height to reach my elbows when I’m standing normally wearing sneakers. I didn’t measure in inches, but I’m 5 foot 7.

@Mitch: I’d like to set up some sort of a sensor to actually measure how many hours I put in standing, but I’d estimate I’m standing or pacing 6-7 hours a day now, with frequent sitting breaks for breakfast, lunch, tea, restroom visits and the few in-person get-togethers I have. After dinner standing’s done–I take the laptop into the living room and curl up on the couch with it if I need to compute. Sometimes, midday, I grab my spiral notebook and sit at the dining room table to jot lists, article outlines, or pseudocode–that’s a nice break from both standing AND the screen.

I’ve found that standing forces me to vary my work position and style more often, which is a good thing. In a chair I could sit for 3 hours straight not moving; I don’t do that standing.

Gina Trapani [+195]
Jan 21 11 at 9:08 am

It look a while for me to convince my employer to set my desk up this way. Luckily we were moving locations, and the new cubes were capable of adding this feature. Many cubes are set up on tracks so it was just a matter of notching it up to the right level.

Many co-workers were super interested, but feared they would miss their old sitting desks, but now many wish they made the switch.

The biggest obstacle for many interested was how do you get the prefect height, so I wrote an article about it here:

http://availeo.com/how-to-create-the-perfect-standing-desk-height-by-taking-some-key-measurements/

I’ve also built a stand up desk at home using metal legs from Ikea and an old coffee table top. It’s waiting for a new iMac to be purchased to sit on it.

David Martinez
http://availeo.com

davidmartinez
Jan 21 11 at 10:10 am

@Gina – Elbow height is a good rule for the keyboard height, more or less. I find I’m comfortable with the center of my monitor at eye level, whereas when I’m sitting the top of the monitor is at eye level. I might fiddle with the monitor height.

The difference between comfortable height for a standing desk and for a sitting desk is only 15 inches for me — others’ distance will vary. That surprised me; I would have thought it would be much more. But it shouldn’t have surprised me, it’s really just the length of my thighs from butt to knee, right?

6-7 hours is probably about what I’m doing at this point, standing at desk, walking around, showering, etc. Probably more.

Sitting now.

Mitch Wagner [+17]
Jan 21 11 at 10:40 am

Thanks for the nice article Gina!

Like others on this post I used/adapted an IKEA desktop and blogged about how I did it here – fyi:
http://bvdk.typepad.com/techy/2011/01/stand-and-deliver.html

mcmSEA
Jan 22 11 at 10:17 am

Gina,
I have been using my Kangaroo adjustable desktop for two days now. It’s easy to move both desktop and monitor up and down. That way I can work either sitting or standing. It cost about about $550–and was well worth it.
Newt

newtbarrett
Jan 22 11 at 3:41 pm

Hey Gina, thnx for the RescueTime tip. I’m a stats junkie and this is the BEST TOOL EVER! :D
Don’t know if I will use a standing desk idea, I don’t like standing ;)

Great site, love the show you do with Leo, keep it up.

Gina,

Thanks for this great post. I had upgraded my desk a while back with the IKEA motorized desk but I only used it one or two hours in the morning in standing position. You rightly pointed me to rethink my shoes for a standing task. I found some new well cushioned sports shoes in my drawer. And that was all I needed to use my desk in all-day standing mode. In between I sit down on my chair when required (mostly reading stuff on the iPad). So far I have managed a week and this seems to be my new modus operandi.

Many thanks!

LagaV

If you ever get tired of standing or grab a 2nd Jerker desk from craigslist, it converts into a treadmill desk pretty easy. We created this one for our office : http://www.ikeahackers.net/2010/10/jerker-treadmill-desk.html and the guys at the corporate home office wanted one so we built a 2nd one using a Nordic track treadmill from sears.

carter69
Jan 25 11 at 8:27 pm

Add Winston Churchill to your list of Standees. See “The Last Lion”…

Glenn Olsen
Jan 27 11 at 10:50 am

I took the leap, no IKEA in Hawaii, so I created my own solution.
Thanks Gina for sharing and nudging me over the edge.

http://www.minimaldude.com/my-stand-up-desk-and-how-i-got-there

Loving it.

Aloha

Randy

kaipaniolo [+1]
Jan 31 11 at 5:24 pm

I’ve used a square Ikea table on a single round pedestal for about 4 years now.

It turns out that Ikea also sells folding bar-height chairs which are just the perfect height for this table, so I can switch between standing and sitting. The chairs also function as accessory desktop space when needed. Double duty!

As it turns out, standing desks have a long history in banking and mercantile as well. I first read about the notion in Sterling Seagrave’s “Hermit of Peking” (a fascinating account, and if you wonder about where many of our modern myths of China orginate, read this book).

Dave Doolin [+1]
Feb 5 11 at 9:30 am

For reasons similar to yours I recently ordered a treadmill desk. I am looking forward to using it and appreciate your caution about initial foot pain.

Unfortunately, I doubt this lifestyle change alone will permanently keep off the weight.

The best metabolic explanation I have seen for why we are all, on average, 25 lbs. heavier than we were 25 years ago is from an endocrinologist at UCSF named Robert Lustig.
In his view, it’s all about increased sugar and especially high fructose corn syrup consumption.

Here’s the link to “Sugar: the Bitter Truth”:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM

Warning: It’s long and technical, but you’ll get the drift by watching the first 10 and last 5 minutes.

Jabba
Feb 20 11 at 12:11 pm

I just convinced my boss to let me switch to a standing desk (I tried it out at home for 6 months first).

I built mine using components from Ikea:
http://justinjackson.ca/building-a-standing-desk/

mijustin
Feb 20 11 at 2:51 pm

I’m trying to set up a minimalist standing desk for the corner of my living room, but am having a lot of trouble finding a laptop stand similar to yours. If you’d recommend the one you use, would you list the make & model if you know it?

Thanks!
(for this post, your contributions to TWiG, & most especially founding Lifehacker!)

Todd
Feb 25 11 at 1:10 pm


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