Quick final wrap-up on this experiment:
While I do believe the studies that a sedentary lifestyle is bad for one’s health, I don’t believe standing up while working is the answer.
I tried the standing desk for about 3 days straight. Not surprisingly, standing is physically hard. The forums I read before trying this said that anyone serious about doing this should get one of those chef mats, to help cushion your feet. Emphatic “yes” to this. The consistent impact on my feet was the most difficult part of this. Also, after standing for long periods of time my knees locked up and felt uncomfortable in the evenings after work.
So, standing, although maybe better than sitting in some ways, has its drawbacks. I think the answer boils down to just making a point to get up and walk around as much as you can. I’m sitting again and things are pretty much back to normal, except for my rekindled empathy for those who have to stand at work for hours at a time.
If anyone’s looking to try this out yourself, the model I followed was great. Absolutely no complaints about the design or construction instructions. It uses $22 worth of Ikea furniture, so it’s very low-risk (since all the pieces can be used normally if you hate it).
Hopefully more short-term experiments like this to come.