Burn Calories and Stay Healthy with a Standing Desk
The risks of a sedentary lifestyle that stems from spending eight hours a day at a desk job has everybody interested in the benefits of changing their posture at work with an adjustable height standing desk. Although there is a lot of press and paranoia surrounding this issue, there are some simple numbers that demonstrate just how significantly sitting affects the human body. People burn a lot more calories when on their feet than they do sitting, whether they are using an adjustable height standing desk to accommodate a working treadmill or just standing up.
Sitting with poor posture can lead to significant problems with back strength and flexibility, and sitting is generally bad for the body’s range of motion, the amount of calories the body burns sitting, standing, and walking provides even stronger, more concrete evidence for why it’s better not to sit so much.
A person who burns 200 extra calories a day will burn about enough calories in a year to be 20 pounds lighter. This number is very rough, because the estimation that burning 3,500 calories is equivalent to burning off a pound of fat is very inexact. Keep that in mind, because many people would kill to lose 20 pounds in a year and get that much closer to a healthy weight.
Generally, typing on a computer at work while seated burns some calories, standing burns more than sitting, and walking burns far more than standing. The following table offers rough estimates of how much a man in his 30s burns at each activity for various weights. Bear in mind that women burn between four and five percent fewer calories than men at the same age and weight for a given activity, and being older decreases calorie burn slightly.
|Sitting and typing|
|Standing and typing|
|Walking slowly, about two mph|
These estimates show that a person burns about 10 -15 percent more calories in an hour standing than sitting, and then another similar bump for walking. So a 150-pound woman may look at this and think a bump from 105 calories per hour to 120 from standing is only 15 more calories. But if she spends six of her eight working hours standing, that’s nearly 100 more calories a day without doing any exercise, which equates to between eight and ten free pounds a year.
The writing is on the walls, or in this case in the numbers. A sedentary person burns far fewer calories than one who simply stands more at work. The little advantages one can gain from an adjustable height standing desk add up in the form of fewer pounds of fat.
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