How I Made My Desk a Standing Workstation for Free

For over a year now, I’ve been standing to work on my computer when at home. I kept hearing about the health costs of sitting too much as well as the benefits of standing. I have a history of back problems and struggle to maintain a healthy weight. A standing desk was said to help both issues, so I wanted to try it.

I looked at options for converting my traditional desk into a standing desk, but they were expensive, and I would have to wait to implement them. The second factor was as much of an obstacle as the first; when I decide I want to do something, I want to do it now. My impatient nature was actually helpful in this case, because I also didn’t want to spend a lot of money. I needed a cheap, temporary solution so I could test the idea before I committed to any big or expensive changes.

I came across this post. When I saw the pictures of desk risers made of Coke cans and boxes of paper, I knew I could find something that would let me stand at my desk without spending a penny.

What did I have lying around to use as supports? Books, of course. I stacked up the biggest and heaviest books on our shelves, doing my best to pick ones I didn’t think we’d be looking for any time soon, and gave it a try.

My DIY standing desk
My DIY standing desk

Although my feet hurt some at first, I quickly adjusted and became a serious convert. I am much more productive and focused when standing. My back problems are gone, and I am now aware if I’ve been sitting for too long. I can’t say it’s helped with the weight at all, but I don’t care. Increased productivity and a healthier back are good enough for me.

I’ve grown so fond of standing to write that I get cranky when forced to sit. As a result, while visiting relatives in November, I went ahead and made myself another temporary standing desk. I just grabbed some of my favorite risers and was good to go.

Standing desk away from home
Standing desk away from home

I would like to graduate to a permanent standing desk solution, maybe something that is still DIY but a little more elegant, but I’ve been using my book stacks for 14 months and I’ve only had to take it apart once to get a book I needed. Any change I might make is going to take time, and I’m too busy writing to deal with it right now.

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