Engineer Gets a Treadmill Desk to Escape His Chair

This month we caught up with Cormac Tooze (44), a Cape Town based mechanical engineer who invested in a treadmill desk from Walk & Work. Cormac spends most of his day in front of a computer, whether he's designing machinery on CAD or attending to administrative tasks. A small part of his day involves walking around the factory to check on progress and chat with staff. Cormac spends his out-of-office hours doing yoga, surfing, cycling, and rock climbing.

Why a treadmill desk?
I bought the desk both from an athletic and a longevity perspective. I wanted to avoid being chair-bound at the office as I know that sitting isn't good for us; the body is just not designed to be in a chair all day. Sitting also tightens the hips and I want to maintain flexibility and mobility for the many sports I do.

Have you tried any other workstation set-ups?
I used a standing desk for a while but stopped when my back got sore. I don't think we're meant to stand all day... just as we're not meant to sit all day. I find it's good to change it up. Now I move between my treadmill desk and a seated workspace on the floor, spending about 50 percent of my day on each.

What sort of time and distance are you doing on your treadmill desk? And your footwear?
I walk barefoot and place my desktop screen on a pile of old telephone books. I started off at about 0.6 km/hr but have built up to 1.6 - 2.6 km/hr. I usually walk about 4 hours a day and my distance can vary from 2 to 8 kilometres a day.

How quickly did you adjust to working this way?
It was pretty easy. In the beginning I strained the tendons in my foot - probably my muscles adapting - and I had to decrease my speed for a while. I also find I need to stop and stand (or sit on the floor) if I'm writing by hand.

Cormac is walking and working on the Lifespan TR1200 treadmill desk combined with a DT5 height-adjustable desk. 

Tell us about your journey on a treadmill, bike or standing desk! Contact us here.

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