Archive for the ‘Susan Orlean’ tag

A Walk in the Office Park

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Focal Desk ChairPhoto Credit: focaluprightfurniture.com

What’s the worst thing about sitting at a desk all day? Oh, just an early death. “For people who sit most of the day, their risk of heart attack is about the same as smoking,” wrote Martha Grogan, cardiologist at Mayo Clinic. Scientists call our sedentary lifestyle the Sitting Disease.

So what’s the alternative? Thomas Jefferson and Ernest Hemingway worked from standing desks. David Clarke, former editor of Vogue Living typed from a standing desk.Martin Keen, the inventor of KEEN footwear (beloved rubber-soled, closed-toe sandals) invented the Locus desk and chair – the desk has the angles of a drawing board and the chair requires you lean and not sit.

But one step further along the reclaim-your-life-from-sitting is a walking desk – that’s a treadmill usually set at around one to two miles per hour and an elbow-height desk. “I am writing this while walking on a treadmill,” boasted Susan Orlean in The New Yorker. “And now you know the biggest problem with working at a treadmill desk: the compulsion to announce constantly that you are working at a treadmill desk.”

Earlier this year, Al Roker tweeted a picture of his treadmill desk. Google, Microsoft, Marriott and Evernote are companies that let employees walk while they work. If you’d like to try it at home you can buy an Exerpeutic 2000 Workfit Desk from Target, while Lifehacker has lots of homemade options.

Writer Susan Orlean was prompted to take up a walking desk while competing against her husband and friends with a personal fitness tracker, just like Nike+ Fuelband. A walking desk gives workers thousands more Fuel points, fitness, alertness and a longer life, one step at a time.

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