I finally setup a stand-up desk. I've been wanting to do this for years. My lower back has been killing me from sitting 12-14 hours a day and I finally converted from a sit down desk to a stand-up desk. Instead of opting for the custom made desk that cost around $2,000, I decided to make my own poor-man's stand-up desk. I went to Ikea and spent $99 on the Fredrik Computer Workstation. The height of each level is adjustable and I was able to find the perfect height for my keyboard and monitors. Unlike other furniture that I've bought at Ikea, this desk was quite easy to assemble and I had it up and adjusted in about 15 minutes.
Come to find out, I've joined the ranks of some famous people who have used stand up desks. Sir Winston Churchill, Ernest Hemingway, John Dos Passos, Virginia Woolf, Thomas Jefferson worked at stand-up desks. Donald Rumsfeld works at a stand-up desk and if my memory serves me correctly, Vladimir Nabakov (one of my favorite writers of the 20th Century) wrote his novels on index cards at a stand-up desk.
In the tradition of great writers and thinkers, I'm glad I made the switch. I've found that my energy levels stay higher through out the day, my back is less sore, I don't get sleepy at my desk and I can easily walk back and forth from my desk to the white board and jot notes, ideas and mind maps. In general, I just think better on my feet (no pun intended) and feel so much more alert, efficient and productive. I also tend to 'pace' when I'm on the phone. Standing and walking just feels more natural when I'm talking on a headset.
In the picture of my desk, you'll notice that I do have a barstool that I use for sitting, leaning and stretching. I've discovered a rhythm, or cadence, that alternates every 10-15 minutes between standing, sitting and leaning. This keeps me moving and productive. I've been so happy with this desk that I bought another and set it up behind my computer desk so that I have a separate work surface for reading, writing and spreading out papers. I'm going to buy another set of desks for my home office too.
As you can tell from the quotation, even Shakespeare agrees...
"With eyes wide open; standing, speaking, moving..."
The Tempest, II, i