I am the type of person who does not like to sit still for long periods of time, which is why the treadmill desks at IQ Solutions were a huge selling point to me. I like to be as active as I can, always opting for the stairs instead of an elevator or escalator, and trying to move around as much as possible. It is for this reason that I have tried to incorporate IQ Solutions’ treadmill work desk into my daily routine for at least a half-hour every day.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that adults partake in “at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity, which can include walking or jogging, 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity, or a combination of both, per week."1 Physical inactivity, described as not meeting the CDC’s standards of weekly activity, is as detrimental to one’s health as smoking or obesity, and was found to be responsible for 9.4 percent of all deaths in 2012.2,3 However, in addition to physical inactivity, sedentary behavior is also linked to having an increased risk for obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, aging-associated frailty, and cancer. 4
What You Can Do
Given all the data that illustrate how detrimental a sedentary lifestyle is, it is important to break up the time spent sitting or standing at a desk by heading down to the treadmill desks whenever available. For me, the benefit of a treadmill desk is that I can accomplish the same amount of work as I can while sitting. Thus, instead of taking a break from sitting by walking around or wondering the halls, I am not losing productivity by using a treadmill desk. Not only has research shown no significant differences between people who use a sitting desk versus a treadmill desk for any measures of cognitive control or response inhibition, exercise has also been consistently shown to improve memory and attention and reduce stress. 5,6 Using the treadmill desk makes me feel better by keeping my body moving while I am accomplishing my work. I encourage everybody to take advantage of IQ Solution’s Wellness Initiative and the treadmill desks to get moving to help lower your body mass index and risks for disease as well as improve your overall health. Next time you have a two-person internal meeting, offer to meet on the treadmill desk. I do, and it’s fun!
1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity. (2015). How much physical activity do adults need? Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/adults/index.htm
2. Lee, I. M., Shiroma, E. J., Lobelo, F., Puska, P., Blair, S. N., & Katzmarzyk, P. T.; Lancet Physical Activity Series Working Group. (2012). Effect of physical inactivity on major non-communicable diseases worldwide: an analysis of burden of disease and life expectancy. Lancet, 380, 219–229. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22818936/
3. Lin, T. C., Courtney, T. K., Lombardi, D. A., & Verma, S. K. (2015). Association between sedentary work and BMI in a U.S. national longitudinal survey. American Journal of Preventative Medicine. Retrieved from http://www.ajpmonline.org/article/S0749-3797(15)00414-6/fulltext
4. Bouchard, C., Blair, S. N., & Katzmarzyk, P. T. (2015). Less sitting, more physical activity, or higher fitness? Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinicproceedings.org/article/S0025-6196(15)00630-8/fulltext
5. Larson, M. J., LeCheminant, J. D., Carbine, K., Hill, K. R., Christenson, E., Masterson, T., and LeCheminant, R. (2015). Slow walking on a treadmill desk does not negatively affect executive abilities: an examination of cognitive control, conflict adaptation, response inhibition, and post-error slowing. Frontiers in Psychology, 6, 723. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4444606/#B2
6. Goodman, H. (2014). Regular exercise changes the brain to improve memory, thinking skills. Harvard Health Publications Harvard Medical School. Retrieved from http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/regular-exercise-changes-brain-improve-memory-thinking-skills-201404097110