A Runner Stands Up to Reach His Fitness Goals

A Runner Stands Up to Reach His Fitness Goals

By Dane Spalt

I’ve been a runner for 20 years or more, although I just started getting into distance and half marathons fairly recently. I was training pretty hard for a half marathon earlier this year and was trying to get a new personal best, and I didn’t feel like I was making any progress.

I work at Health Alliance as a Sales and Retention manager for large group business. After 18 years in sales, I took a job as a manager, which means much more computer time. I work from home these days and also do a fair amount of driving. I took the Rally HealthSM  Survey and one of the questions was, how much do you sit each day? I answered honestly that I probably sit six – seven hours a day.

Because I’m a runner I stay in decent shape, but I felt I should be better considering the amount I was running. One day not long after doing the survey I received an email from Rally about the dangers of sitting too much. I also found out that sitting counteracts your training, and you really can benefit by standing more. It made a lot of sense and I realized that all this sitting was really working against my fitness goals, so I decided to make a big change.  

Standing more during the day helped Dane Spalt improve his running. Photos by Sam Wiebe.
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Standup desks can be pretty expensive but I do some carpentry, so I thought, Why not build my own? Now I stand while working on the computer and doing conference calls. I have an anti-fatigue mat, plus I wear my running shoes. I also make it a point to take breaks — walk around the house, walk into the kitchen and get something to drink, or take the dog on a walk.

The first couple of days after I made the change, I was exhausted by the end of the day. I told my wife, now I know what it’s like to work at a factory all day! But little by little I got used to it. I now stand five – six hours a day without much problem, and I’ve noticed an improvement in my endurance while running.

There’s a 10-mile run in a couple of months called The Tunnel Hill run – it’s an old train track turned into a scenic jogging trail. I am looking forward to seeing how I do. I also think that I am more productive while standing. Sitting less has really changed my life and most likely increased it too. Thanks to Rally for the insight and guidance.