Some employees at the Mayo Clinic have no excuse for missing a workout on the treadmill--because their workspace now includes one.
More than ten employees at the clinic are using modified workstations that allow them to engage in a low-intensity workout while working on their computer or talking on the phone, MarketWatch reports.
Dr. James Levine, a Mayo Clinic obesity researcher in Rochester, Minnesota, uses a treadmill workstation, which he says typically cost about $1,100. He tells MarketWatch he sets his treadmill at about 1 mile per hour while he is working at his workstation.
Levine studies how everyday actions burn calories and is a proponent of incorporating more daily activity into the regular work routine.
He has created a track so meetings can be held while walking. It's an effort to give workers who want to live a less sedentary lifestyle an option, he says.
"The idea isn't to force people to walk and work," Levine tells MarketWatch. "The idea is to give people choice because they're never had it before."
Levine says the modified workstations give workers an opportunity to burn more calories. Levine says the health benefits can be substantial.
"We're talking potential weight loss of 30, 40 pounds a year," he tells MarketWatch. He adds that use of treadmill workstations can also help with back pain. "Walking is one of the great treatments for back pain."