Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Thursday, January 30, 2014
Sitting, the New Smoking
In the year 2014 we keep our kids away from harmful things like cigarette smoke as it's known to cause major health problems leading to lung cancer and death.
I remember a few years ago we used to tell Grandpa that smoking was bad for him, and he would laugh and say, "I've been smoking for 50 years, and I'm still stronger than you".
Of course, when he first began smoking, everyone smoked. There may have been warning signs that it would eventually lead to cancer and an early death, but it wasn't anything immediate or visible.
He smoked for 50 years and he eventually died from lung cancer. He could have spent more time with his kids, grandkids, and could have met his great grandkids, but he never got the chance.
Almost all of us have a similar story of a relative who smoked for their entire life knowing that the risks involved, but because it wasn't immediately hurting them, they continue to do it.
Now when the doctor tells them, "you have Emphysema, and if you don't quit your going to die." That's when it hits home, and by then it's usually too late.
Times have changed. We as parents are teaching our children that smoking is bad because we have all seen the effects. I believe that our kids will be teach their children that sitting too much is bad because unfortunately they will have seen the effect that sitting had on their parents.
In 2045, instead of saying your dad worked in a factory and smoked all day and now he's paying for it, they'll be saying my dad spent all day at a sitting at his desk and now he's paying for it.
What can we do?It's time to get up out of that chair. Many of us are stuck to the computer like glue all day because we have stay up to date with our email and phone calls.
Get up from your chair when you get a call on your cell phone. Take a walk as you talk for 15 minutes. Then you can come back to your chair and sit again. If you take breaks often, you'll reduce your risks for these diseases and illnesses.
The next level is to get an adjustable height desk that allows you to both sit, and stand at your desk which at least gets your blood flowing a bit more. Standing naturally keeps your muscles more tense and active than sitting. There are several ways to get started standing, and some people just simply stack boxes on top of each other to elevate their monitor and be able to stand at their desk. Unfortunately, those options look unprofessional, so if you need a more polished look, check these sit to stand options.
Finally, the ultimate way to stay in shape, keep active, and get your mind on track while stuck at your desk is to add a treadmill. You can easily add a walking treadmill or get an entire treadmill desk to add to your current desk. This treadmill desk option lets you walk and type at the same time.
Whatever option you choose, do something different because 8 hours at a desk plus your commute and time spent on the couch, your probably sitting about 12, out of the 16 hours that you're awake. It's an alarming amount of time.
Tuesday, January 28, 2014
My Treadmill Desk ExperienceThe common misconception with the idea of a Treadmill Desk or walking workstation is that you have to be some kind of massively overweight person who is so lazy that they have to be shoved onto a treadmill at their desk. This couldn't be further from the truth. Many times, when I mention my treadmill desk, people wonder if I was obese at point, or wonder why I would need one because I'm already too skinny as it is. The treadmill desk wasn't built to be some magical weight loss obsession. The Surgeon General recommends walking 10,000 steps a day. If you've ever tried to use a pedometer and measured your steps, you'll quickly realize that 10,000 is whole heck of a lot. I'm a very active person after work with my kids, and sports, so I figured 10,000 must be easy. I was only hitting about 3,000 to 5,000 steps a day. That's only a fraction of what the surgeon general recommends.
I then moved to the treadmill desk. I began walking about 3,000 steps in an hour!
Quite a big difference! I started off by only doing about 2 hours a day on the it, which easily got me to 10,000 steps in a full day.
My Treadmill Desk NotesI just felt good.
Energy was up.
I felt like I smiled more.
Over time, I noticed I was getting more done.
The bottom line is that the treadmill desk was having a greater impact on my mind and body than just weight loss. I did notice that my weight dropped a bit over the first month, and if I was a little heavier, it probably would have been a significant change.
The experience of walking and working is for everyone. Don't get stuck on the idea that it's only for weight loss. It really takes you to a new place in your working environment that I had never been. It has been an inspiring experiment that will have to continue on because I'm not getting rid of this thing.