So I worked for a whole month straight to meet an impossible project deadline (successfully, yay!), my employer lays off 10% of the workforce (not including me), and lots of change is in the air, mostly good change. All well and good, but of course the result was that I got sick. I won’t bore you with the details, but these various causes have gotten me way behind on blogging, answering emails, and putting out my newsletter.
Egg production is way up, as it always is at this time of year. A month ago, the increase was due to pullets who were just starting to lay, but now we’re getting into the time of year where all the hens are laying like mad. That will probably peak in April and then slowly decline until the end of the year.
I stumbled across something odd a couple of weeks back — using exercise balls as chairs. Exercise balls are big inflatable rubber balls around two feet in diameter. Like the old “kneeling chairs” that were popular in the Eighties, they’re yet another gimmick to make you sit up straight instead of slumping against the back of your chair. I have a bad back from all the hours of desk work I do. Kneeling chairs were good for my back but hard on my knees. Exercise ball chairs are comfier, not to mention bouncier. They don’t lock you into a single position the way other chairs do, and in fact the unnoticeable amount of effort you expend staying balanced on one can add up to about 300 calories a day of exercise, just by sitting!
You can just buy a 55cm or 65cm exercise ball and sit on it, or go whole hog and buy an Isokinetics chair, which has a base with castors on it to put an exercise ball into. I’m trying both.
My back is apparently quite weak, and I wake up stiff if I use the ball chair for more than half an hour a day. My son Dan can sit in it all day long without problems. In theory, I’ll be able to work up to a full day in the chair.
One thing I’ve noticed already is that, while sore from the workout, my back is no longer complaining to the point where I like to do some of my Web surfing while standing.
In general, being on the farm is good for my back, but office work is bad for it, and I spend a great deal of time in front of the computer.