For years, humans have been fighting their evolutionary design. Simply put, our bodies are built for activity. The advent of the technological revolution is the latest in a long line of culprits that have promoted a sedentary lifestyle.
Throw into a global pandemic, and now more than ever, people are not moving and it is resulting in more than just “more to love”. In response, work from home employees have found creative ways to remain active, including the use of treadmill desks.
COVID-19’s Impact on Activity
Today, the average adult spends approximately 6.5 hours sitting each day, turning what was once an exception into the norm. Sadly, the number is on the rise, as the next generation sits 20% more than the average person. In an age where everything that you could possibly want is at your fingertips, it makes sense that the trend continues to progress.
These numbers have been hyper-inflated over the last year, causing around 40% of people to experience unwanted weight gain. With many companies opting to forge ahead with a remote workforce, finding ways to remain active are all the more critical.
Benefits of a Treadmill Desk
So what is a treadmill desk? Well, the creators didn’t use much creativity when it came to the name, so it is exactly what it sounds like: a standing desk with a treadmill underneath. Treadmills have been used for decades but this newest application has many people pushing their machines harder than a Navy Seal in hell week.
Couldn’t you just go outside and walk? Absolutely, but it would be hard to walk around your neighborhood with your laptop hanging from your neck, although a crazy contraption like that does exist.
The ability to knock out two birds with one stone is among the biggest appeals to using a treadmill desk, but it doesn’t stop there.
In 2020, the United States obesity rate climbed past the 40% mark for the first time in history. Granted, not all of this is related to a sedentary lifestyle, but in many ways our lack of activity plays the biggest role.
Thanks to their time-tested ability to promote healthy home workout options, treadmills are a great option to help remote workers get up and move. Here are five impacts implementing a treadmill desk can have on your health.
1. Weight Loss Potential
Studies have found that simply walking at a slow pace for 2 hours per day while working can burn as much as 300 calories. That might not sound like much, but it could help someone lose as much as 60 pounds in a year.
2. Reduced Blood Pressure
Anytime you walk, you increase the blood flow in your body. This, in turn, helps to lower overall blood pressure. Introducing a treadmill to your daily work routine can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.
3. Reduce Stress
Endorphins—you know, the feel good hormones—are released when we engage in physical activity. Essentially, they encourage our body to continue doing what it’s doing by producing an elevated state of being where stress melts away like a popsicle on a warm summer day.
4. Reduces Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Approximately 34 million American suffer from type-2 diabetes, which equates to 1 out of every 10 citizens. Walking helps to reduce blood glucose levels, which can reduce the long-term risks associated with the disease.
5. Better Performance
Easy there Speed Racer, we were not talking about that type of performance, although increased physical activity will improve all areas of wellness. Walking while working has been shown to increase creativity and productivity. This is, in large part, due to the endorphins that were mentioned earlier.
Deion Sanders famously coined the phrase, “Look great, feel great, play great.” Sure, his quote might not be based on science, but there is scientific evidence to support the statement.
Are Treadmill Desks Worth It?
So it all boils down to a simple question, is a treadmill desk worth it? It depends. Understandably, that is not the answer you were expecting. So here are the brass tacks:
- For remote workers that are tied to their desk all day, 40+ hours per week, they are a great option. Pricing has come down in recent months and options can easily found on Amazon or at most of the big box retailers. Keep in mind that the lower end products will not have the bells and whistles that you might be used to from that NordicTrack in your closet that hasn’t seen daylight in 15 years.
- Those who are on the fence, and have an old treadmill lying around, might consider a DIY approach. A short trip to the hardware store can yield comparable results, and save you some money in the long run. The most important thing is to commit to daily exercise, regardless of the method.
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