Standing Around…

imageLong story short, I’ve started trying to stand almost all the time at work.

It all started when I saw some of this show:

There are two free episodes – about 2 hours worth.  It was awesome enough that the Wife and I bought it, and we’ve been consuming it at home, an episode every few days.  Not through it yet.  However, that took me over to his website and Youtube channel:

He has SO MUCH stuff out there, it’s a bit overwhelming.

At the same time, after a lot of asking the wrong people the wrong questions, I finally got in to see a Urologist, who gave me a diagnosis:  Prostatitis.   Possible cause: sitting too much.   Lots of Truckers get it. 

So, I made the decision to stand at work, as much as possible.

In order to do this, I had to learn how to stand:

  • Tighten up the abs.  Like, lightly punch yourself in the stomach. 
  • Screw my feet into the ground so that my toes would go away from my midline – this also tightens up the butt. 
  • Bring everything back to 10%, 20% tightness
  • This is stable position.

I got (had) some equipment to help:

  • Work had already provided me with a geek desk – adjustable height desk.
  • Get a gel standing mat from Bed Bath and Beyond. 
  • Yoga block – to prop my foot up from time to time.
  • Fancy keyboard
  • Tackball
  • Eye level monitors (monitor stand provided by work)

Also some other habits

  • Walk barefoot most of the time.    Luckily, at my work environment, shoes are very optional. 
  • Switch back and forth from right hand mouse to left hand trackball, every few days. 
  • See a good Massage Therapist.  This guy, Travis: http://elementsmassage.com/louisvilleeast/our-therapists/id/5577/travis   knows his stuff.  
    • Side note: a massage with him, for me, usually involves pain-threshold numbers, and lots of muscle names.  One of these days we’ll work through everything – we’ve already visited the scapulae, the tersis major/minor, and currently working on pec minor and some calves and some hip stuff that I can’t remember the name of.
  • Continue to see a good chiropractor

The Result

  • My right hand is no longer numb
  • My lower back no longer hurts when I stand
  • My belt is tighter.  I don’t know how many pounds yet .. too much variability – but I’m definitely 1 belt notch tighter.  Without any other exercise.

Thoughts

Chiropractory vs Massage Therapy vs MobilityWod:

I used to think that Chiropractory by itself was good enough – I’d just have to go back and get a tune up every few months.   What I’m understanding now is that if I have soft tissue problems going on – and my body adapts around those creating other overly used muscles – my body will try to drag my spine out of position.  Once the spine goes out of position, then other muscle problems happen, and .. pretzel.

Now, with a) using my muscles properly – core muscles to provide straightness rather than relying on soft tissue slump;  b) not sitting – see below, and c) a therapist to squish and crush the lactic acid crunchies in my system, for the first time, after a month away from the chiropractor – I didn’t feel like I needed an adjustment.

I went anyway, and I had a beautiful adjustment.  Lots of crackling.  We started working on shoulder and hip adjustments.

Its not perfect yet – I’m doing something wrong for my Lats and my Hip, there’s a spot that keeps forming there.  And my right shoulder.   But it’s a LOT better. 

Standing, Lactic Acid, Warm Up, Walking

After standing all day, the bottoms of my feet can get a bit sore.  And then I go and see the therapist, and he has to squish all this lactic acid out of my system.   Not right.

Turns out, “warm up” and “cool down”:  Think of the Lymphatic system as a network of sponge.  It doesn’t have any motors.. it takes the body moving to start the squishying process that then moves the stuff around.   That’s the purpose of warm up and cool down – to get the lymph moving.  So If I stand for a while, and then go for a 2 mile walk – the first mile, I’m sore.  The second mile, I’m fine! 

I can’t just stand, I have to move.   And move for a while.

Standing vs Sitting Caloric Burn

Supposedly, a person burns 0.7 calories/minute more while standing than when sitting down.   Or, use this handy calculator:  http://www.juststand.org/Tools/CalorieBurnCalculator/tabid/637/language/en-US/Default.aspx

That adds up to around 1700 calories a week for me.  1 pound every 2 weeks.  That seems about right.

Sitting

What is involved in keeping your body straight while you are sitting?  Not that you keep your back straight, usually people slouch anyway.  According to that dude mentioned above, It involves your Quads (front of your thigh) and your Psoas (behind the 6-pack).   They stay on, like, all the time.   And sure enough, I had these really tight quads, and a lot of lower muscle back pain – I’m guessing the lower back strain was to counter the Psoas?

And that’s the other thing – to keep back straight while sitting, its harder than when standing?   I can’t prove any of this.. but, yah, that’s why we slouch when we’re sitting.  And if you slouch all the time, your body says: here, let me help you:  and it stiffens up the back of your neck with fatty tissue…

Yeah.  It’s a bummer.  Better to squat. Smile Or If I’m going to sit, I’m going to sit back and let my back be supported by the chair.

Do NOT walk Duck-Footed

Very much a side thing – as a result of watching @MobilityWod, I now cringe every time I see somebody walk, or run, or bicycle, duck-footed / knees bowed out.   Its pretty bad for you.    Click over to this article (from whence I grabbed the image) for more awesomeness: http://www.crossfitworks.com/archives/4797

In Other News – my Soylent Shipped!     Time to get that project off the shelf I stuck it on.

PS: That was the BEST picture I could find of me standing.   I have a ways to go yet.

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