After becoming convinced that his sedentary lifestyle posed a major health threat, Dan Kois decided to spend a month on his feet. (He made exceptions for driving, using the bathroom, and, once, attending a play). His thoughts toward the end of the experiment:
Hit wall. Completely fucking dead. Wife rubbed my feet tonight. If Sitting Dan got a foot massage from his wife, he’d thank her. Standing Dan is a whiny asshole. Email to friend: “If a nun gave me a $100 bill I would be like, screw you, my legs hurt.”
What he learned:
[T]his enforced standing has made me realize how much of my time bonding with my family is spent seated. Now we play Crazy Eights with me hulking over the table like a grudgingly accepted giant. I’ve begged off story time because my kids don’t like craning their necks to see the pages, and I find it maddening not to be able to snuggle with them in bed. At the beach house we shared with my in-laws for Easter weekend, I was completely unable to relax or join anyone else in relaxing. … It all came to a head at Easter dinner, during which I stood straight up as if in a Last Supper parody, loved ones assembled to each side, my roast lamb perched on that stupid aluminum work tray. All I wanted to do was just be for a little while! Instead, I could never stop thinking about my dumb, clumsy, painful body, not for a second. …
My month has been an ordeal, but it’s clearly succeeded. I’ve lost almost five pounds and gained muscle in my legs, especially my calves. I’ve cut my time-wasting drastically, editing and writing more than in any month I can remember. I’ve walked 92.5 miles, basically without trying.