Okay, time to come clean. I’m not one of those guys who can say “I may be getting older, but I’m in the best shape of my life!” I’m the first to admit that my biggest roadblock to being healthier is a complete and total lack of self-control and willpower. There are gyms nearby, I could get up earlier, I don’t have to finish an entire pumpkin pie by myself while watching MacGyver reruns, but that’s what I choose to do. But for people with more control than I, the biggest roadblock they face is time. Work and family life make it hard to find time to exercise and stay healthy, let alone reduce stress. So what if there was a way to exercise while working? No, I don’t mean putting on ankle weights and running up and down the halls at lunch time. I mean a way to get in your exercise, stay healthy, and reduce stress, all while working at your desk. Say hello to the desk treadmill.
These are catching on like crazy in offices all over. Care about your employee’s health and well-being? Better buy them one of these. It keeps them in shape and reduces your future costs in healthcare and workers compensation. Walking just 20 minutes at 3mph is enough to meet the minimum daily requirements set forth by the CDC. To reach optimal health walk for double that time a day (roughly 2 miles). The American Heart Association states that this can ward off ailments such as high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, and can even improve your mental health.
No one expects you to sprint for 20 miles while typing, but a slow or medium paced walk for 20-30 minutes at a time can do wonders for the body and mind. Trying to do too much could pose a problem, as NPR’s Patti Neighmond found. “When I first started, I thought I’d simply hop on the treadmill and be off walking all day while working. But it turns out it’s really hard to walk, talk, think, and concentrate.” However a Minnesota-based financial consulting company “Salo” had better results. Craig Dexheimer, Director of Operations exclaimed, “Remarkable! We didn’t even go to a gym. We just went to work!” Dexheimer claims to have lost 25 pounds since he started using the treadmill desk.
Unfortunately treadmills aren’t cheap. These treadmill desks can go anywhere from 500 to 2000 dollars. This is where you have to look at future savings. How much less are you going to spend on medical care for this employee? It also makes you a more attractive employer. Employees like employers who care about their staff, and this is another way of showing it. This may be a great way to draw new talent to your team.
Desk treadmills, your thoughts? Let us know in the comments or on twitter, @JordanD42 .