Walking AT work: My new treadmill desk

Sitting is the new smoking.

And, as of tomorrow, Monday, I will be working while I walk. Albeit, at the very slow pace of 0.7 mph, but moving and not sitting. And that’s what counts.

I’m now the proud owner of a LifeSpan walking treadmill, and builder of a homemade treadmill desk because I was too frugal to buy the fancy one that came with the treadmill.

This idea started when I read an excellent article in The New Yorker written by Susan Orlean about treadmill desks and the dangers of sitting all day. They’re bad, the dangers. In fact, as I told my wife, it’s more dangerous parking your ass all day if you’re a woman. My prediction: She’ll be using one of these within the next 6 months.

So, after weeks of reviewing treadmill ads on Craigslist, and having one sold before I could get there and finding another that required a moving crew to get it out of the condo, I decided not to take the risk of buying a dud with rat-chewed wiring and spiders living in it, and splurged and bought a new one designed for walking and working.

Saturday, I spent the afternoon building my desk. The first one I designed mirrored the one I didn’t buy and was pretty complicated, with lots of moving parts. So, as I didn’t want to spend two days building a desk, I pretended I was water and took the easiest path downhill: I attached brackets to the wall and a piece of wood for the desk. Total cost: around $40, which made the blow of the treadmill cost easier to swallow. Barely.

Here are some pictures. And here’s a nice page on the dangers of sitting, including some nice simple graphics that even idiots like me can understand. Sitting is killing you

I cleared out a bookcase and made room for the treadmill. These things are big and I have a small office. At first, I thought I'd slide it under my desk, but it was too cramped. So, bookcase to the garage and treadmill to the corner.

I cleared out a bookcase and made room for the treadmill. These things are big and I have a small office. At first, I thought I’d slide it under my desk, but it was too cramped. So, the bookcase moved to the garage and treadmill took its place.

I bought three brackets from Home Depot and mounted 2x4s on each. This way, if I'm not happy with the height I can take the 2x4 out or add to it. I thought about putting a cleat around the wall but I didn't think it would give the desk enough support beyond the wall and I'd need a leg or two. It's amazing how long it took me to find the studs and put the brackets in.

I bought three brackets from Home Depot and mounted 2x4s on each. This way, if I’m not happy with the height I can take the 2x4s out or add to them. I thought about putting a cleat around the wall but I didn’t think it would give the desk enough support beyond the wall and I’d need a desk leg or two. It’s amazing how long it took me to find the studs and put the brackets in, but I’m slow in the head, so it makes sense.

I bought this $22 piece of pine at Home Depot, where they've finally hired employees to help customers, thankfully. My wife helped out and put two coats of amber shellac on it. I added three more. I thought about using melamine, but I'm just a wood guy. Just am, always will be.

I bought this $22 piece of pine at Home Depot, where they’ve finally hired employees to help customers, thankfully. My wife helped out and put two coats of amber shellac on it. I added three more. I thought about using melamine, but I’m just a wood guy. Just am, always will be. (BTW, the sprinklers were on when I set this up for my wife to shellac. The board was a little wet and I told her it would be fine. I forgot shellac isn’t water based. Oops. She was pissed.)

Here it is, ready to go. Monday morning I'll be working and working on improving my health. It's a win/win. I still have some work to do with the cords, as one of my plugs isn't working properly.

Here it is, ready to go. Monday morning I’ll be working and working on improving my health. It’s a win/win. I still have some work to do with the cords, as one of my plugs isn’t working properly. I’ll get it all cleaned up and looking pretty. Or not.

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3 thoughts on “Walking AT work: My new treadmill desk

  1. Pingback: I’m working from a walking desk (Treadmill desk) | Yves Hanoulle

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