If I had a nickel for every time over the last two years someone asked me for advice on how to work from home… well, I wouldn’t need to work from home anymore, because I answered this question. a lot.
And it’s fair! After all, I’ve been doing remote work, full-time, non-stop, and for countless clients (including my job here at FBG) since 2007. I’ve learned a thing or two… or maybe twenty.
And one of the most important things I’ve learned is that, wow, yeah No I like to sit all day. But I don’t like standing all day either. Call me Goldilocks. Basically, I like to move around when I can, which means that normally, if I’m on the phone, I’m usually walking around my house.
Or at least me was …until everyone started using Zoom and suddenly, finding myself with a few minutes to stretch my legs while chatting, I chained myself even tighter to my desk. Sure, I could go from sitting to standing, and of course I try to take regular breaks to stretch, but still, my body craved movement.
And the latest addition to my home office provides a way to do just that.
I received a FlexiSpot All-in-One Desk Bike (with desk) to review at the end of December (not sponsored! Although I’m very grateful for the opportunity to try it out!), and while I was excited to try it, I was also a little nervous. My husband, who shares the office with me, was not very enthusiastic about adding another piece of furniture to the space. And while he knew I’d like to be able to move my body without moving away from the screen, he wasn’t sure how much coordination typing while pedaling would require. Hey, I’ve fallen off a stationary bike before, and that was without trying to do any intelligent tasks besides spinning, you know?
Fortunately, both concerns were practically discussed from the beginning. The bike takes up less space than we had imagined, and when I finish doing my daily miles, I place it on the side of my desk, where it stores quite nicely.
And as for typing, my high school typing teacher, Miss B., would be proud. (I know, I know, typing class is beyond me as a woman of a certain age. I’m okay with that! Middle age is awesome!) My typing isn’t as fast as when I’m sitting or standing, but it’s still stable and precise. I find that I prefer to sit or stand when working on a story that requires really deep and creative thinking. Still, for simpler or simpler tasks, such as answering emails or reading, I can cover a lot of theoretical knowledge and at the same time meet my deadlines.
So how much cycling am I really doing? I made it a point to start small to make sure I didn’t cause any overuse injuries (and to reduce the likelihood of it looking like, you know, hard work, which might dampen my enthusiasm), and still over time. During January, I covered over 200 miles! Traveling 10 to 15 miles a day on any workday is very easy; Even at a truly leisurely pace, that’s accomplished in about an hour. I try to vary my resistance a little and, although I don’t pay too much attention to my speed, every once in a while, before taking a break, I do short sprints to get my heart rate up or reach the next distance milestone.
A note on this: the bike tracks trip and total mileage, time, speed, RPM, and calories on its own screen, and doesn’t pair with an app, watch, or anything. Personally, that’s a plus in my opinion: I have enough things connected to keep track, and if I want to use the bike for a legitimate workout that I want to show on Strava, I’ll start it manually on my watch. You know? But, for my ambitious step counters, you should know that my watch does not automatically count my turns as steps. It doesn’t bother me, but I realize that some people are more interested in capturing that data.
The other cool thing about this particular bike with the attached desk is that it easily rolls anywhere in my house. For most tasks, I still like to set up in my office with my dual monitors, my ergonomic keyboard, and all my reference materials nearby. (As I write this, I’m starting to realize that I’m a little particular. Hmm.) But hey, who doesn’t like to change things up from time to time? I’ve occasionally brought my desk bike into the living room to work from my laptop with a slightly different view, and let me tell you, it beats working slouched on the couch.
Now, while I haven’t used my FlexiSpot desk bike for any serious training, I have gotten a little sweaty on occasion, and I realize that might be a bigger problem (especially here in Florida) in the summer. . Fortunately, most people I meet via video have no problem with me looking a little disheveled; If anything, it led them to ask more about my experience with the desk bike! Still, if you’re someone who needs to look polished and professional during the day, you may need to plan on using your desk bike in important meetings, so keep that in mind if you’re considering an upgrade like this.
Seriously, I thought this would probably be great, but it completely exceeded my expectations. On days when I use it well (which, at this point, are most work days), my mood is better, and since my body tends to feel better with gentle, steady movement, I’ve even helped with some knee. and back pain (although that’s specific to my experience with osteoarthritis and lower back sprain; I’m not suggesting it as a cure for anyone else’s problems!). I may have worried about how I would fit this into my days and whether I would keep it, but now I’m more worried about what I would do if it were taken away from me.
Do you have questions? Want to share how you updated your home office? Let’s hear it! —kristen