Standing Desk Irritation

When I moved to Halifax 2 years ago one of my commitments to myself was that I would create a standing desk for myself. That is a computer work station where I stand instead of sit while I do my work. I’ve been aware for some time of the wellness price we pay when we sit for hours and hours each day.

My inexpensive laptop stand also includes a shelf for glasses, TV remote and a cuppa joe

I recently started investigating how I would make that happen and have plans drawn up for building a base to insert under the armoire where my iMac currently resides. Because it involves hauling all sorts of crap out of said armoire, I haven’t quite gotten around to it, but I’m getting there.

I must say that I’ve developed a rather dirty little habit since setting up my apartment. I got myself one of those lap desks and spend far too much time happily stretched out on my sofa, working away on my laptop while simultaneously watching TV. I know that habit has upped the ante on how sedentary I am and that it encourages me to both watch way too much TV and spend too much time on-line.

Getting e-mail done while watching TV. Yay!

So recently I decided to get myself a laptop stand on wheels to allow me to at least stand up while I’m multi-tasking. Do a little research on the benefits of standing or stand up desks if you’re wondering what those benefits are. This morning I put my stand together and began working in the stand up position.

And I’m shocked already by the results! I can’t believe how deep and powerful the links have become between sitting & working. My body is filled with the jitters from standing and working; I can quite literally feel the pull to sit down. I also recognize that my creativity feels compromised because my head is filled with jibber-jabber related to my discomfort with standing and working. Surprisingly, my body feels pretty good in terms of stress on my legs, back and feet. I thought that might be a challenge but it is the psychic and emotional landscape that feels like a minefield!

Still I am committed to persisting with my stand-up laptop use. I consider it training for the day when my iMac is only available in this mode too. I know that my health will improve as a result and I believe that once my body calms down and adjusts, my creativity will actually improve.

Funny how we create growth in areas of our lives where we least expected it. I’m intrigued to see what insights come out of all of this to say nothing of how much better my body will feel from having that additional exercise each day.

Nothing to say?

My friends and clients would tell you that I am not a person who has nothing to say. So I find it interesting that this blog seems to have turned into an annual posting of where I’m at! Strange, that. So unlike me. But I continue to age disgracefully, doing things that older women aren’t supposed to, exploring life, living life large.

As I talked with a friend this morning it dawned on me that it would be more useful for me to take a few moments after I have one of my regular chats with my 3-4 very close friends and create a blog post about either what we talked about or what surfaced in my Self awareness during the discussion.

Today’s chat was interesting because my friend is someone who invests very heavily in traditional approaches to getting fit and losing weight and yet isn’t ever able to lose the weight that he lugs around. We share the fact that we are both overweight. But where he swims, walks, uses the treadmill religiously and heads off to one diet program or another each week (it’s Weight Watchers at the moment) his shape never seems to change a whole lot. He expressed his admiration for the fact that I do marginal exercise, don’t follow any kind of diet except for eating whole foods and cooking everything I eat from scratch, and yet seem very hale and hearty.

Indeed, that’s how I experience myself most of the time. I very seldom ever get sick, and when I do I’m not down for long. I take no meds other than a couple of vitamins and I’m still quite strong. Now, I have begun a regular stretching routine that I do pretty religiously because I was starting to find that I was ‘seizing up’ in the joints. I felt like my brain was getting as inflexible as my hips so that was a big incentive to return to some gentle yoga.

Chasing a good photo is one of my best invitations to get out and move! Here I am at Amoreira Beach, Algarve, Portugal

I could probably do more in the cardio department but I’ve discovered that I’m one of those people who respond better to having an active life than to doing exercise. In summers for me that means camping. Hauling my little trailer around, setting up camp, breaking down camp, going for walks, schlepping water all make a big difference. In winter I spend a lot of time in Portugal where I walk all the time. And when I’m in Nova Scotia during winter, I love to head out to its many wild beaches looking for beach glass, driftwood and other great finds. I’ve been amazed at how my body feels so much more robust with just those activities.

So I do have something to say today and that is that remaining active, in whatever form feels right for you, is important. Doing the traditional ‘fitness’ routine just about kills me simply because it is a ‘routine’. In part, I love my life because each day is different than the one before it. And having discovered that being active, for me, is my way of staying fit has been one of those small but important discoveries that shifts staying fit from being drudgery to being fun.