Treadmill Desk

For several weeks my wife has been asking me to convert our old Proform treadmill into a treadmill desk. The idea, exercise-wise, is to be on the treadmill for several hours a day at speeds less than 2 mph.

Treadmill desk

This weekend my son and I did it, and the conversion was straight-forward. To start, we moved the treadmill into my wife’s home office and then removed the walking-pole like handles and the decorative guards where the hand supports connected to the treadmill console. This allowed the treadmill to fit in the space better and allowed us more access to attach the desk.

I then cut a 12 inch deep piece of 3/4 inch birch plywood that I happened to have in my shop, and cut it to the outside width between the handles. This is the actual desk and the 12 inches was sized to the necessary dimension to fit my wife’s MacBook Pro. I rounded off all the edges with a router and then sanded them to make them as smooth as possible.

To mount the desk, I drilled holes in the corners of the plywood approximately 1 inch in from each side. To make these smoother, I used a counter sink on both sides of each hole. I then use plastic corner ties to attach the wood to the bottom of the treadmill handles. The tie connectors were on the bottom side of the wood and the excess plastic straps were trimmed.

This mounting position was approximately the right the height for my wife. If you need it lower, you can put wooden strips or blocks between the desk and the handles. Similarly, if you want it higher, you can mount it on the top. The idea is to have the laptop keyboard at a comfortable height that you can use while walking.

The laptop screen is too low for comfortable use, so I added a 19 inch Samsung LED TV with an HDMI input and mounted it (VideoSecu TV Wall Mount Articulating Arm Tilt Swivel Bracket) on the bookcase/wall in front of the treadmill. While the mounting hardware is adjustable, I suspect I will be raising it an inch or two as my wife gets more experience in using the desk. It should be at a comfortable height so you can look straight ahead and not crane your neck.

Possible things yet to do: put a couple of coats of water-based polyurethane on the wooden desk, raise the TV, and strap down all cables.

Treadmill Desk, Front View

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