My Standing DeskFriday, February 03 2012
Many years ago, when I was drafting for a living, I stood at a table much like this one for most of the day. I had a stool but when working on large drawings standing was usually required.
Then along came Computer Aided Design (CAD) and we all ended up sitting passively in front of computer screens.
Fast forward to present day. Keep going... I've been sitting a long time.
I've been following the 'standing desk' idea now for awhile. A few months ago my wife was redecorating her office and we had a trip to Ikea on the horizon so I spent some time on ikeahackers.net and came up with some ideas.
In Ikea I wandered around the store and finally settled on the Billsta bar table. At least the legs anyway. The table top was a bit too small. I replaced that with one of the bigger desktop surfaces they had available.
The general rule among standing desk experts is the table top should be at about elbow level. The Billsta is just a tad too short. Right now I have it resting on a few 2x4s and may even raise it a bit more.
For the most part if I'm at my desk at home I'm standing, usually for several hours a night. If I work from home I can go til about mid-afternoon at which point I usually have to sit for a bit. I did pick up a folding stool at Ikea for when I need to rest my feet. The first week or so my feet and back hurt. I do recommend wearing shoes while standing and get an anti-fatigue mat to stand on (you can find these at Lowes or Home Depot).
The last bit of the puzzle was what to do with my monitor and laptop. Standing requires the monitor to be much more elevated off the desktop than sitting. I surfed Craigslist for while and found someone selling some monitor arms. This allows me to free up my entire desk surface giving me much more space, and if I sit I can adjust the arms accordingly.
I haven't lost any weight (I blame the holidays) but I do feel much better since starting to stand. If you've been thinking about trying it there are many ideas on the web on how to inexpensively get started. Next I'm going to investigate hacking up some sort of standing configuration at work.