A Standing Desk Exercise You Can

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If you have a standing desk, you might choose it to combat all the negative effects of sitting eight hours a day (you know, like weight gain and increased risk of cardiovascular disease). But just standing won't get you very far. Research shows that going from sitting to standing doesn't increase the calories you burn. Also, it can hurt your legs and joints! "It's not good for you to stay in one position for a long time, so you have to make sure you're walking around," says Sarah Jane Jane Parker, a certified personal trainer in Wyoming.

Luckily, it's easy to sneak a workout at the table where you're standing. Try the routine Parker suggests below, combining strength movements with stretching exercises. They're so simple that you can operate them while reading an email or a conference call, and they're so subtle that you don't have to worry about your coworkers staring at you.

Standing Calf Raise: Raise your toes and lift your heels off the ground. Take it slow - two counts up, two counts down. Do 15 to 25 reps (both legs are fine, or one leg at a time, more challenging).

Stand and stretch your legs: Work your core—this keeps your lower back from arching too much—then straighten one leg behind you and work your glutes as you walk. Do this 12 to 25 times.

Standing Hamstring Curl: Bend one knee, move your foot to your hip, and put it back in place. Do 12 to 25 reps on each side.

Standing calf stretch: With one leg close to the table, lift the ball of one foot off the floor and place it on the leg (keeping the heel on the floor). Lean your body against the table and feel the stretch in your calf. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then repeat on the other side.

Standing chest expansion: Put your hands behind your back, straighten your arms, lift up, and pull your shoulder blades down. You'll feel your chest open, and it should feel great to bend over at your desk. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds, then repeat.

Standing/Back Stretch: Bend your right knee and lift to hip height so you can balance on your left leg. Put your left hand on your right knee and twist your torso to the right. Hold for 10 seconds, then repeat on the other side.