Monday, February 18, 2008

Increase your productivity with an internet-connected home gym & treadmill workstaion

[Note, 12/8/08: due to popular demand, all internet treadmill walkstation/workstation posts have been moved the the following blog, ]

[UPDATE: 2008.06.12]
Just when I didn't believe the best could get bester, this "holy grail" has in fact been polished and improved upon. See
I will have pictures as soon as hits a plateau after our current growth spurt.
# # #

Well friends, it has been a long journey on this quest to make my treadmill time more productive than that of a hamster on a wheel (or another way to look at it, make my computer time more healthy than a frog on a log), but at last I am at peace with- no, not merely at peace... I am TOTALLY PSYCHED ABOUT the home-gym exercise room internet-connected treadmill workstation.

The first breakthrough was the treadmill-while-you-guitar discovery (PLEASE DO NOT try this at home without first consulting a medical professional and sports therapy specialist or personal trainer!).

After the guitar, a world of possibilities came flooding to mind. My first application, I decided, was to be able to work while I walk on the treadmill. "Work," for me, means business/technology communications. The requirements: HID (keyboard, mouse), video display, audio output, computer system, disk storage (optional), and network connection.

The first experiments went well (with the exception of an embarassing PSP Tony Hawk Project 8 ankle injury which we shall never speak of again). Trial 1 can be examined here.

The natural tendency is to physically attach everything to the treadmill. This is a mistake, and breaking out of those mental constraints enabled version 2.0, here.

I've even drafted a guide on to the ultimate internet treadmill computer workstation, where you can see the available parts to build your own, or shop for comparable prices to build the not-quite-so-ultimate-but-cost-effective internet-connected treadmill workstation.

Just imaging: it now seems utterly absurd to me that I would have ever consciously decided to sit on my ass for 1, 2, or even 3 or more hours just to read, triage, respond, delegate, categorize, tag, or file EMAILS. Those days are long gone.

Today, my email reading time means improving my cardiovascular health, strengthening my core and lower body, and ultimately increasing the precious amount of time I get to spend living inside this body. I hope by sharing this experience, someone else may do the same.

WARNING: what is presented below is not for casual computer users or amateur fitness hobbiests, nor is it for those who do not consider their health and life quality valuable items to invest in. Listed below is the BEST solution, crafted over a period of 15 months of trial, error, and correction, until the ultimate, premium solution has developed.

Smooth Fitness 9.45ST treadmill with 60" Deck, Hydra Suspension and Motion Control

txt: Smooth 9.35 HR Treadmill with Wireless Heart Rate Control and Hydra Suspension

Evo 1 Treadmill'

Smooth Fitness 9.45 TV Treadmill with 15" Flat Screen TV

Samsung HPS6373 63" Plasma HDTV

OmniMount MOTION 52 Motorized Cantilever Wall Mount (fits 37"-52" flat panels)


[revision] oops- I omitted the entire computer (thin client/terminal) and network connection part. For geeks, use your throwaway laptop, and, well, you already know how to do you network hookup.

For non-geeks, please post a comment requesting network, computer hookup instructions, and, time permitting, I will post detailed instructions.

If there is enough interest in this, and I have he opportunity to help enough IT workers, I will start a new blog devoted to this, with detailed analysis of the product evluation and selection process for each component.

Also, if there is interest, there is also a whole lot more to this system. Full power backup and network fault tolerance, plus a 1000Mbs-wired home-network with 3 TiVo HDs that all talk to one another and the PCs.

[added april 2008]
More info, as promised, re: DVR (TiVo is the only one UI worth considering at this point) and wired/wireless networking.

TiVo TCD648250B Series3 HD Digital Media Recorder

TiVo TCD652160 HD Digital Video Recorder

Netgear GA311 Gigabit 10/100/1000 Mbps PCI Adapter

GA511 Gigabit PC Card

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