Would You Try A Treadmill Desk? Health System CEO Walks The Walk When It Comes To Fitness

St. John Health System President Jean Meyer walks at her treadmill desk. (credit: Sean Lee/WWJ)

St. John Health System President Jean Meyer walks at her treadmill desk. (credit: Sean Lee/WWJ)

DETROIT (WWJ) – The head of a metro Detroit hospital system is walking the walk when it comes to fitting fitness into the workplace.

If you’ve got a conference call scheduled with St. John Health System President Jean Meyer, you probably won’t hear anything in the background; but chances are, she’s traveling miles, at the same time, at her treadmill desk.

“It gives me more energy,” she told WWJ Health Reporter Sean Lee. “You think a little clearer when you’re moving around a bit.”

Meyer set up her treadmill desk complete with an iPad and a phone.

She said she’s logging plenty of steps, getting all her work done and feeling more alert all day long.

Another benefit?

“I don’t get that, you know, 4 o’clock slump in the afternoon when you can do a little bit of walking,” Meyer said.

Another benefit? Setting a healthy example for patients and employees.

“I can’t preach to patients about keeping themselves healthy unless I can say, you know, I do it myself as well,” she said.

Meyer realizes treadmill desks won’t fly in every office, but there’s a lot management can do to encourage moving more at work.

“Not everyone can afford to do a lot, but just to make the effort to show your employees that you care about their health,” Meyer said. “So, whether that be encouraging them to take walks, getting them a different kind of desk … Those cubicles, you could raise and lower those desks and just encourage them to get up.”

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