Getting started with a standing desk is easy – here is how I did it….
Welcome to the Standing Desk King! If you are interested in standing desks I am here to tell you about my experience switching from sitting to standing at my desk. I will also provide useful information you need when considering buying a standing desk.
You have probably heard that “sitting is the new smoking” and are starting to see more and more of your co-workers standing while they work at a standing desk or a sit to stand converter desk. I have been using a standing desk for years (sit to stand converter) and I am extremely glad I switched to standing.
The standup desk I use happens to be an Ergotron WorkFit-TL, which I will elaborate on later. On this site I will show you the benefits and possible downfalls of venturing into the standing desk life from my own personal perspective. I will also discuss the perspective of people I have come across along the way who have started standing.
Like many people struggling to decide whether to start standing and what desk to use, I too was on the fence. I wasn’t sure whether to buy a standing desk, a sit to stand converter, build one myself, or find innovating ways to start standing. I started to see more and more people using standing desks the more I walked around the office. Even my boss started standing after his doctor said it would help him with his back. He went the DIY route using a couple of bookshelves, and sure enough, his back felt better and he kept his bookshelf desk.
THE STANDING DESK PRICE OF ENTRY
The first thing that shocked me as I researched whether or not standing at my desk was for me, is how expensive the desks are! The price for entry is not cheap.
Fortunately, as more and more people are standing, and more varieties of standing desks are hitting the market, that price is dropping. Most standing desks were between $300 to $500 and now you can find plenty of desks cheaper than that, especially sit to stand converter desks which are easy to start using. There’s even a very popular DIY IKEA standing desk that you can pull together for around $25.
THE JOURNEY STANDING BEGINS
After all that research, and not pulling the trigger, I moved to a new job, and the desk I inherited already had a sit to stand desk converter! Someone else made the decision for me and I haven’t looked back. I’ll provide an in-depth review of my experience over the year using the Ergotron sit to stand converter but here are quick takeaways:
1. First Month Standing:
At first, standing felt AWESOME. It was a new and exciting way to approach the day at my workspace, and it made my new position at a new place feel much more exhilarating. The additional energy I gained from standing everyday was multiplied by the new environment. If you are on the fence for standing at work, and are about to take a new job or new position, I highly recommend that you transition to a standing desk when you are moving into a new desk and a new workplace.
2. 2-4 Months:
I travel a lot in my job, and visit many departments of our organization in separate buildings. I also visit other companies we work with so I see a lot of different workspaces with a variety of desk setups. During my travel, I started to notice standing desks everywhere! More and more people are starting to stand at work. Even ENTIRE COMPANIES are outfitting their facilities with standing desks. That is right – every desk they buy is some form of standing desk or stand to sit converter desk giving all of their employees an option to stand. That is amazing! And why wouldn’t they!? Research shows that employees that use a standing desk are more productive and more satisfied in the workplace. Sounds like a great investment to me!
3. 4-6 Months:
I began paying attention to the different styles of standing desks people were using and started asking questions. I didn’t realize there were so many options and styles for how you can transition to a standing desk. And of course, this also means lots of different companies. When I came across other people using standing desks at work, I started asking what they thought of the desk they were using and comparing their experience with mine. I paid attention to brands, popularity, ease of use, how sturdy were they, how heavy, how light, big, small etc. I started to research my own desk and experience because I could tell something was happening. The workspace was changing and turns out I was a part of it.
4. 6-12 months:
After about 6 months I started to feel more tired when I was standing at my desk and noticed that maybe standing wasn’t all it was cracked up to be? But I also started to wonder if perhaps, I wasn’t using the best posture. I asked others if they had the same experience and started looking online. This is where I discovered the importance of desk ergonomics and having good posture. I learned that stretching periodically, and having a standing mat or “anti-fatigue” mat to support my work surface was key.
I immediately went out and picked up a Varidesk Anti Fatigue Standing Mat which made a huge difference. After standing for long hours and full days, it can feel like a workout, but with the mat I didn’t notice it as much. My wife heard me talking about it all the time and she went a step further. She bought me a pair of Dr. Scholl’s shoe inserts, which I highly recommend for general health if you walk alot. Posture, support, and knowing how long to stand are essential to a good standing desk experience.
WHEN YOU’RE A CELEBRITY STANDING AT WORK
Now that I have been standing for over a year, many of my colleagues come up to me and ask “how do you like using a stand up desk?” Here are the top reasons I give them:
1. My Productivity is Incredible
I didn’t notice it at first, but after a month or so, not only were my daily steps way up on my FitBit tracker, but I could tell that on a daily basis I was accomplishing more of my goals, engaging with my boss and coworkers more, and producing more results. Simply put, I felt better, and found myself wondering why wasn’t everyone else acting the same way?
We have all heard the cliché studies that say standing desks are healthier and make you more productive. I learned firsthand that by standing while I worked, I was more focused and thoughtful about the tasks at hand and how I was setting out to accomplish them. Every day I was setting more goals to accomplish. I was checking on subordinate projects regularly. I felt motivated to walk and see a coworker- instead of emailing them. When people emailed me from other companies, I would CALL THEM BACK instead of emailing them back. I was definitely getting more results and felt I had more energy and motivation to be a proactive worker.
2. I Am Physically Stronger
The first couple of days, and even weeks of standing at my desk, I noticed that my legs felt like I was getting a great leg work out every day. I even found myself taking a break and sitting and wondering if I wasn’t cut out for this! Over time, the feeling was less and less, and I noticed that my endurance and leg strength was increasing. Now it’s not like my squat was going up hundreds of pounds, but I could tell that my legs were more toned, and walking/running felt easier and quicker.
When moving throughout the building I was opting to take the stairs more often because I was becoming used to moving and moving quickly from one point to another. In addition to leg strength, I felt my core becoming stronger and more lean. I noticeably lost a few pounds in the first few months despite already being relatively physically fit. My abs and back were more sturdy and felt more like they were “there.” It is a hard sensation to explain, but it felt good. I also learned that it is still good to sit a few times a day, and to try and not stand for longer than 4 hours straight despite my endurance getting stronger.
3. My Confidence is Higher than Ever
Something about standing, and moving, and engaging with people more directly just makesme feel better. When I talk on the phone with other people, I talk with moreconfidence. When I go to see other coworkers, I walk with more confidence. There are even studies that show that whenyou stand, you speak with more confidence and you think with more confidence. Your voice sounds different, your expressions are different, all from standing. Andthis can be picked up in person or on the phone. Some of that could be from feeling physicallybetter as well.
4. I’m a Better Person to be Around and Work With
At my last job, where I sat for hours at a time, I could go a full day without talking to another coworker. I replied to everyone via email, even my boss. When people called me, I would look at the caller ID and immediately think, “oh great, she’s calling about this problem.” There were days I just felt tired all day, and didn’t have much energy to interact with others. I was constantly wondering when I was going to move on to something else. Now, I can’t remember the last time I felt that way.
I walk, talk, and see everyone I work with. I don’t worry about why people are calling me, because I have already CALLED THEM to solve the problems of the day. By interacting more with my coworkers I have more friendships and relationships. Throughout the day, I look forward to seeing and engaging with them. I have also noticed that they enjoy coming to see me, and walking up to me while using a standing desk and engaging about projects we are working on together.
5. They Should Get One Too!
And finally,the last thing I tell them, is I highly recommend they get one too, either a full standing desk set up, or a sit to stand converter like the one I use.
So there you have it – that is my experience with converting to a standing desk. If you have made it this far, than I think you should make the conversion too! To help you get started, I am providing a review of the sit to stand converter desk I am CURRENTLY using, and also some reviews for some of the best standing desks out there.
You can also find all kind of information about standing desks and making the conversion throughout my site. Drop me a line below in the comments and let me know if you are thinking about making the sit to stand conversion? Are you already standing and trying to find out more about it? Let me know below!
MY CURRENT STANDING DESK SETUP:
Ergotron WorkFit-TL, Sit-Stand Desk Converter | Black, 37.5″ wide | For Tabletops
This desk is a strong and sturdy sit to stand converter. This model is a “Z-frame” desk converter. It moves straight up and straight down without sticking forward which is a huge improvement from old Z frames. It is sleek and easy to adjust up and down.
My current set-up has two LG 20” monitors on top, with a keyboard and mouse on the keyboard tray. I’ve seen reviews of people using two 24” screens. I am taller (6’2”) and have no issues raising it to eye level. When I lower it, I don’t go all the way to the bottom of the desk. I lower it to eye level when I am sitting which is a great feature and a better ergonomic approach to my desk. When in the raised position, I can fit almost anything underneath it.
Here are some features listed from Amazon:
- No assembly required – slide it out of the box onto atabletop, and you’re ready to work!
- YOUR COMFORT IS KEY: 20 height settings along a 15″ (38cm) range help pinpoint your perfect sitting and standing heights, so yourmonitors and keyboard are in your comfort zone – no matter what size you are.**Be sure to account for the height of your existing desk when assessingWorkFit-TL’s height range.**
- BOOST YOUR PRODUCTIVITY: Don’t be chained to your chair –you can choose to sit, stand, and give your body the movement it craves whileyou continue working in perfect ergonomic comfort.
- STURDY DESIGN THAT’S BUILT TO LAST: Easily lift yourequipment with a light touch – move up to 40 lbs. (18.1 kg) straight up anddown thanks to spring-assisted Constant Force technology. Plus, WorkFit deskswon’t tip and are protected by an industry-leading 5-Year Warranty.
- HOW DOES WORKFIT-TL DIFFER FROM WORKFIT-T? The WorkFit-TL’swider footprint gives you more room to spread out, with 125 additional squareinches (317.5 additional cm2) of surface area to hold your laptop, twomonitors, phone charger, tablet, and coffee – all of your equipment is at yourfingertips whether you’re sitting or standing.
The great thing about this standing desk is it comes assembled in the box. You just pull it out and place it on your current desk or work table. It weighs 56 pounds so you just want to make sure your desk is strong enough to support. My desk has room on both sides to support a phone, folders etc as well but if it were smaller, I would put this under the Ergotron.
Here are the specifications:
Weight: 56 Pounds
Dimensions: 23 x37.5 x 8.1 inches
Keyboard Tray: 25x 9.25 inches
Weight support: 40 lbs (18.1kg)
Warranty: 5 Year
Again, this is the desk I am using and I highly recommend it to anyone else ready to jump into a standing desk. It currently has 4.7 out of 5 Stars on amazon and can be found here. Drop me a comment below and let me know if you are thinking about making the sit to stand conversion! Are you already standing and trying to find out more about it? Tell me what desk you are using and what you think about it. Or just ask me about anything you see on my site!