Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Why I love my treadmill desk

So one of the things that I blew a chunk of change on a couple years ago that was completely worth it was my treadmill desk setup.


I spent about $700 on the treadmill- I wanted one that could take the pounding all day- and $500 on a TrekDesk. Although I love the TrekDesk- the large surface is really awesome- if I had it to do over again I might have gone with making my own.

The way a treadmill desk works is that you set up your computer on the desk, and thus you can walk while you work(or procrastinate!). I thought it might be tough to manage typing or mousing or what have you while I walked, but other people gave great reviews, so I figured it couldn't hurt to try it.

I started out walking at 0.6 miles per hour, which was about as slow as my treadmill would go! But as I got used to it I increased the speed and eventually found my level between 1.6 and 2 miles a hour- that's while I'm typing or otherwise interacting. I do watch movies and TV shows too, and then I can go up to 3 miles per hour.

Obviously I'm not walking very fast. A lot of people have given me the crazy look, wondering why it's even worth it. The answer is that I tend to spend a LOT of my free time on the computer, and sitting so much makes me very fidgety and cranky. Of course, it's also terrible for my health. So I got the treadmill desk less to capital-E Exercise than to stave off the fidgetiness and to help burn some excess energy. Actually, I find that it helps me concentrate much better- I guess that's the ADD at work! But other people report the same thing, so who knows?

Although I didn't lose any weight(it wasn't a goal), I gained a lot of muscle. I remember wearing shorts for the first time in the spring and realized that I'd gotten muscles on my knees- I didn't even know knees HAD muscles! I gained this confidence, too, in my body- I knew that I could walk and just keep walking indefinitely. I knew that I could walk a marathon(albeit very slowly!). This was something I hadn't had in the past, a faith in my body's ability physically.

I also started sleeping a lot better and feeling more energetic. I just felt so much better when I walked!

This year I lost a lot of my conditioning, so walking two or three miles a day on the treadmill is my main form of exercise as I start building back up. I'm not going to lie, the first walk after 18 months of not walking was a toughie! But it really started to build back up fast- it is amazing feeling my body get back into shape.

This week I'm introducing some other forms of exercise back into my plan. Walking is a great foundation of health, but it won't take me all the places I want to go. I really dig Mark Sisson's fitness pyramid; I think that'll be my blueprint for now. My fitness goals- that's another story for another time!

There are a ton of great videos about treadmill desks on Youtube- I was especially pleased to find one by my favorite vloggers, the Vlog Brothers! Check it out!

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