After reading Crabby’s inspirational post about the benefits of a stand-up workstation, I was taken back to the final days of my last two-week vacation. I remember walking down the street catching a glimpse of myself in a store window and thinking I’m standing so much taller, straighter. My always tight hip seemed to move so much smoother. While I’d had a very active vacation of swimming and hiking, I thought that can’t be it–I’m active at home too. Then I realized I’d spent the last two weeks standing tall…no sitting at a desk, no sitting in a car, no sitting in front of my TV or laptop.
So I decided I’d stand-up for fitness. My excitement about this two-week experiment quickly turned to despair as I thought “my employer is never going to go for a standing desk.” While riding the bus to work that morning, I was all but ready to give up when it occurred to me, why am I sitting? Half the people on this bus are standing.
Bam. Four fewer hours a week spent sitting: I’ve committed to standing each way on the bus to and from work. Inspired by my own creativity, I next thought about my weekly telecommute day. There’s another eight hours. And if I’ve made a makeshift standing workstation for one workday a week, why would I grab my personal laptop and curl up on the couch in front of the TV? That little shift gets me another 8-10 hours a week standing instead of sitting.
So the final obstacle not solved on my bus ride…where do I fit this workstation in my apartment? Solution: my kitchen counter.
It’s a perfect height, so I only needed a 12-inch box to raise my laptop keyboard to elbow level. There’s also great light, a window, electrical outlets, and plenty of space. And with my stove just behind me, I’m already eager to multitask by making homemade marinara sauce and bean soups.
As for my employer, well, they certainly surprised me. As you can imagine might happen in a corporate environment, the long-term readjustment of my workstation and navigating facilities policies wasn’t exactly easy. That process is ongoing. But, my team supports me in a one-week, no-cost pilot to see if I’m comfortable, have reduced lower back stiffness, and there is no productivity impact.
All said and done, it’s pretty amazing what two people (and six reams of paper) can accomplish in 15 minutes.
Have you explored a standing workstation? Did you notice better posture? New habits? What goals have you had to implement in steps when there was resistance to the full scale approach?