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Why Standing More at Work is Like ‘Running’ a 10k

Posted on October 14th 2016 by Peter.
Updated on: April 4th 2017.

Why standing more is like running a 10k

Do you know how many hours per day you spend sat down?

Most of us will spend a considerable amount of time on our backsides during the course of a day either working at a desk or watching TV. A recent survey found that on average we spend 12 hours a day sitting. Add those 12 sedentary hours to the desirable 7 hours of nightly sleep; that’s around 19 hours of being fairly inactive.

This is clearly bad for us but what can we do about it? Most of the time we are not sitting we’re just heading for the next seat to sit in. Whether that be sitting in the car or on the bus getting to work, sitting at our desk or workstation while at work, sitting down to eat lunch, sitting in the car to get home, sitting down to dinner, sitting to watch some TV, and finally lying down in bed.

For the health conscious amongst us we’ll be putting in time at the gym or going for a road-run to combat all of this excessive inactivity. But is it really enough? There plenty of evidence to suggest that even going to the gym 5 days a week and getting your half hour cardio session in will not sort out the damage done by sitting for long periods of the day.

So why is sitting so bad for us?

One of the worst parts of sitting is how it affects the way your body handles sugar. The glucose your body breaks food down in to after you’ve eaten is one of the main fuels that keeps you going throughout the day. But high periods of sitting and inactivity leaves high volumes of glucose in your body, which leaves you at risk of being obese, and in many cases heart disease and diabetes.

What happens if we spend more time on our feet during the day? The BBC along with Dr John Buckley and a team from the University of Chester decided to find out.

Calories burned standing all day vs sitting

They asked 10 volunteers who usually spend their day working at a desk to spend at least 3 hours a day for one week standing.

When the experiment was complete and the data was analysed, they noticed some big differences. The volunteers blood sugar levels returned to normal much faster than when they sat after food. Also heart rates were found to be 10 bpm higher when stood up to work. This meant that each volunteer was burning around 0.7 of a calorie per minute more when standing.

Therefore, let’s say you stand up to work for 3 hours of a standard 7.5 hour working day. You could burn on average 42kcal more per hour. Just by standing up. That’s 126kcal per day for next to no extra effort.

In 1 week of 5 working days you could burn on average 630kcal. That’s the equivalent of running a 10k!

Do that for 50 weeks of the year and you’d have burnt the same amount of calories as running 10 marathons!

Standing & Height Adjustable Desks

It’s not easy to stand up and work at a traditional desk. It’s too low and you’ll soon start to get back pain and aching joints. The solution is to raise your desks working height.

Most desks have a little height adjustment in them but not enough to allow its user to stand. Enter standing and height adjustable desks. These products are great as they allow their user to change the working height of the desk throughout the day. And there’s no need to clear the surface off every time you want to adjust it’s height. If you want to stand up to work, simply turn the adjustment handle or on motorised versions, use the control switch to raise or lower the desk. Simple!

You can view the affordable adjustable desks we have available on our main website. If you’re not sure on the right type of adjustable desk for you, our sales team are happy to talk you through the features and help you make a decision.

We’re currently upgrading our own office desks here at Workplace Products. So why not join us and try just simply standing up to work for around 3 hours per day. It will help you stay fit and healthy, and lose a bit weight aswell!

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