METM14 presentation

Treadmill desks: working at 2 km/hour

Kelly Dickeson, Tarragona, Spain

If you love your job but despise the sedentary lifestyle it entails, you are not alone. Researchers who study the effects of inactivity on the human body agree: sitting down for an excessive length of time is killing us. Even regular exercise cannot undo all the damage caused by sitting at a desk for 40 hours a week.

In this talk, I will propose a convenient way to incorporate “non-exercise activity thermogenesis” (NEAT) into your daily life: the treadmill desk. If that sounds eccentric, consider the growing list of employers that provide their staff with walking workstations: Google, Microsoft, Evernote, GlaxoSmithKline, Dairy Queen, the U.S. Federal Government and so many more.

I will briefly outline the scientific justification for the NEAT lifestyle and discuss my year-long experience with an inexpensive treadmill desk that has changed my life for the better. I will discuss the pros and cons of “walking while working” and provide DIY tips to help you make the switch without breaking the bank.

Kelly Dickeson is a freelance translator and editor. She works in a range of fields and has recently been focusing on medicine. A native of California, she has been based in Tarragona, Spain, for the past 12 years. She made the switch from sitting to walking in late 2013.