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Treadmill Desk

by James Comment(s)

I received my treadmill on Tuesday, and immediately set it up under my desk. I spent four hours on it, at 1.5mph, which turns out to be six miles and approximately 17.5K steps. For me, that also comes to approximately 700 calories burned.

I replicated that on Wednesday. This morning I weighed in, and have lost five pounds. I have to assume most of that to be water.

Not being used to standing this long or walking this much, I’m a bit sore. I expect that to get better in time, and plan to gradually increase the amount of time I spend on the treadmill every day.

This treadmill has a 20″x50″ walking surface, which I have found to be a ton of room. I mostly use it barefoot (or in socks, now, that the soles of my feet have begun to complain) and don’t have to worry about misplacing my feet and injuring myself. It has nice aluminum guards and tight tolerances that prevent that, but the belt is large enough that I have only made contact with the guard rails once or twice. The interface is no-frills. They didn’t send the Bluetooth model, which I reached out to them about, but it still covers distance, steps, calories, and time. It seems to be designed for multi-user use, because it prompts you for your weight every time you turn it on. Fortunately it auto-populates the last weight entered. It is smooth and, contrary to some of the reviews I read, I cannot hear the motor or fans when standing on top of it. I can hear the friction of the belt and my footsteps, that is all. And I can easily hold a conversation at normal levels while on it.

I have found it to be very transparent to use. Any concerns I had about it being distracting or difficult to coordinate with working a computer are unfounded. If I have to concentrate on some complex code, I’ll stop and sit, but for the majority of my day I could probably walk without issue.

It has fixed casters on the front that allow for it to roll forward and backwards. Unfortunately, for most desks I imagine, it needs to be rolled from left to right. If I were to suggest one change to LifeSpan for the unit, I’d suggest locking casters that can go in every direction. I grabbed a stool from the garage to sit on the treadmill, and in turn, sit on, for the time being. Then I ordered a new base for my chair that I hope will work — allowing it to be set on top of the treadmill without damaging it — which I will post more on later. The idea is to have choices, and be able to conveniently select whether to stand, walk, or sit.

In short though, I’ve added four hours of walking to each day I’ve had this, burning around 700 extra calories I am sure will come with other benefits. I’m sore, but that is to be expected with any new physical activity. Even if it is just activity you are doing at your desk. It may seem gimmicky, but if it gets you up and moving it is one of the best ideas I can think of. I think this will work out well.