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Summary:

Sky high gas bills, road rage, unpleasant body odors on packed subways: The many downsides of commuting already constitute a solid argument in favor of remote work. But a recent study offers another reason to trade in your train pass: Your commute is killing you.

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Sky high gas bills, uncontrollable road rage, unpleasant body odors on packed trains: The many downsides of commuting are well-documented and already constitute a solid argument in favor of opting to work remotely. But a recent study out of Lund University in Sweden offers another reason to trade your train pass for a home office: Your commute is bad for your health.

The study tracked 21,000 full-time employees in Sweden aged between 18 and 65, comparing their health and asking about their method of commuting and sleep and stress levels, as well as tracking how many days they missed work. The results indicate that taking a car, train or bus to the office is likely to negatively impact your health.

“Generally car and public transport users suffered more everyday stress, poorer sleep quality, exhaustion and, on a seven point scale, felt that they struggled with their health compared to the active commuters,” like cyclists, said Researcher Erik Hansson. The longer the commute, the worse the effects.

ABC News spoke to Dr. Redford Williams, professor of medicine at Duke University about the findings. He argued that while sitting in your car is not an inherently healthy activity, the actual problem with commuting may be as much the lack of control we have over the experience as the hours of inactivity:

We know that people who have a lot of demands and very little control over how they meet those demands are at a higher risk for negative health effects. And when you’re relying on a train to get to work, it’s totally out of your control most of the time.

This is entirely in line with existing science we’ve covered previously on WWD, which shows lack of autonomy is linked to higher stress, which, in turn, correlates with worse health. Flexible and self-directed, new ways of working that are web enabled and location independent, boost autonomy and so should also boost health.

And if you’re still on the fence about approaching your boss about ditching your commute, the grim math about how much your commute is daily journey is costing you might spur your courage and get you into her office.

At Net:Work, we’ll explore the benefits — and challenges — of an increasingly mobile workforce. The event will be held in San Francisco on Dec. 8.

Image courtesy of Flickr user Ben Woosley.

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  2. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/XbQwbIQB #smallbiztech

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  5. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you: Sky high gas bills, uncontrollable road rage, unpleas… http://t.co/a9Kmtpxv

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  6. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you: Sky high gas bills, uncontrollable road rage, unpleas… http://t.co/qcrLuzut

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  7. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you: Sky high gas bills, uncontrollable road rage, unpleas… http://t.co/nkfpSLpE

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  8. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you: Sky high gas bills, uncontrollable road rage, unpleas… http://t.co/IRsbIAwW

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  10. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you: Sky high gas bills, uncontrollable road rage, unpleas… http://t.co/Ex8pYNru

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  11. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/pjKEhExg

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  12. RT @BusinessApps: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/3eLIORUt #businessapps

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  13. RT @likke: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/CpqXOJ8m #webworking

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  14. RT @WebWorkerDaily: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/zcUEibR6

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  15. RT @WebWorkerDaily: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/YloOdcFd

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  16. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/Cpkw4LmY #webdevfeeds

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  17. Fburnr: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you: Sky high gas bills… http://t.co/UOWBdiyX

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  18. RT @waraney: RT @WebWorkerDaily: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/5Jrn0jL1

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  19. RT @WebWorkerDaily: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/zcUEibR6

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  20. RT @curiousmitch: RT @duffbert: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/dL41u1BZ

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  21. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/tacZ5iRk

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  22. RT @duffbert: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/OqIxz2s4

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  23. RT @curiousmitch: RT @duffbert: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/YCXb9ePS

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  24. :-) Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/kSt6oflz

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  25. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/oGaWzE0o

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  26. RT @goodridge: :-) Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/kSt6oflz

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  27. RT @SebastiansCube: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/oGaWzE0o

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  28. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/kAIj1nqB RT @goodridge: :-) <-HEAR HEAR!

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  29. Working from home may be the healthier choice. “Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you”: http://t.co/73VfBTVO

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  30. RT @duffbert: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/OqIxz2s4

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  31. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/AhUYX0UL

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  32. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/vldg7lqF

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  33. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you – Sky high gas bills, road rage, unpleasant body odors on … http://t.co/MryQC58f

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  34. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you – Sky high gas bills, road rage, unpleasant body odors on … http://t.co/aI1Qe5yd

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  35. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/ZJtOEMUl

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  36. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/8qUY9NXy

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  37. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you #gigaom http://t.co/cEI88aES

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  38. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/71H3frv6

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  39. RT @paulcbrady: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you #gigaom http://t.co/cEI88aES

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  40. Is your commute making you sick? http://t.co/BNuRjcT6 A recent study shows commuting is bad for your health.

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  41. Is your commute making you sick? http://t.co/BNuRjcT6 A recent study shows commuting is bad for your health.

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  42. RT @goodridge: :-) Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/pbxEdh3M

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  43. YES! RT @htoby: RT @goodridge: :-) Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/TUNtmqpV

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  44. No comments from @jmeserve @jviscarolasaga on this one, please – http://t.co/AHsprOsC (via @gigaom)

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  45. Commuting is killing us, who knew? (um, I did!) http://t.co/4Dxx1Sv8

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  46. RT @martinlieberman: No comments from @jmeserve @jviscarolasaga on this one, please – http://t.co/AHsprOsC (via @gigaom)

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  47. Another reason to #work remotely: #Commuting is killing you http://t.co/mEoMvLvl via @gigaom

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  48. #in Good news for those of us who work at home – http://t.co/G4AVb2xv

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  49. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/h4jaA3Y5

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  50. RT @HelenMaryLabao: Sighs. Totoo. RT @likke: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/PRviypdk #webworking

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  51. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you — Online Collaboration http://t.co/UaPdt4jl

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  52. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/Mga0swmj #telework #virtual

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  53. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/w5ZZZZbx

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  54. There would be many areas in our economy where you can’t live without your presence in the work place. so this option is available for select few in the new economy world only.

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  55. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you — Online Collaboration http://t.co/3pb6o9gO

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  56. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/XAJUnpJH

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  57. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/xVBeSfih) http://t.co/xMFMmyBz

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  58. Commuting is killing you http://t.co/ThBhs1IU #télétravail

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  59. Commuting is killing you http://t.co/kpRwKvbg #télétravail

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  60. RT @SylvainePascual: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/ThBhs1IU #télétravail

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  61. RT @SylvainePascual: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/ThBhs1IU #télétravail

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  62. RT @SylvainePascual: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/ThBhs1IU #télétravail

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  63. The inherant problem with the non-workplace mantra is how it intimidates managerial bureaucratic heads who make a career out of appearing important. If it can be clearly identified that their presence does not improve production than who is going to buy all the suits?

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  64. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/enegylfi #virtual #communication #collaboration

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  65. Problem with the anti-office approach is Managers. There is an existing mantra from old-school ways that Managers are necessary to “herd” the employees production. If employees production improves without their involvement than their importance depletes drastically. How can they pretend to work now?

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  66. “@lorievela: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/XWeuRnB1 #virtual #communication #collaboration”

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  67. RT @SylvainePascual: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/ThBhs1IU #télétravail

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  68. There is no shortage of reason to telecommute or telework. They always will exist. The key is getting people to take the step.

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  69. RT @lorievela: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/JlqPNEEw #virtual #communication #collaboration

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  70. RT @lorievela: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/GFcqwTlD #virtual #communication #collaboration

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  71. RT @likke: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/CpqXOJ8m #webworking

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  72. RT @likke: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/CpqXOJ8m #webworking

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  73. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/gPi4UdJm #virtual #communication #collaboration

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  74. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/gWj380bo

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  75. Commuting is to work is killing you http://t.co/1gQmhFAS

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  76. RT @likke: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/CpqXOJ8m #webworking

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  77. RT @JimAyson: Commuting is to work is killing you http://t.co/1gQmhFAS

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  78. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/kiUd5uxl via @WebWorkerDaily

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  79. RT @franciscojsaez: “@lorievela: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/XWeuRnB1 #virtual #communication #collaboration”

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  80. Here in the Washington DC area, the traffice and corresponding commute time is reason enough.

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  81. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/LWantDRD

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  82. Something to think about on the way to work today http://t.co/w4lEdBhC But we all know that right?

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  83. Goed idee om morgen thuis te werken dus :) RT @Burgemeester Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/X8jubw3E

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  84. I spent 3 hours in my car yesterday, I concur – Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/5BnjlSDY

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  85. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/1H1UMpSC

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  86. RT @gadgetboy: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/1H1UMpSC

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  87. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/Nq7VpANw #Cmgr #Collaboration #Communities

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  88. I SO relate-> “@GinoRossi: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/3USAavvC #Cmgr #Collaboration #Communities”

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  89. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/OFXlPvS3

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  90. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you – GigaOm http://t.co/Y7mznZKI

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  91. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/rJjMnlPH via @gigaom #freelance #freelancing

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  92. Freelancing may be good for your health: http://t.co/d4X11jSe

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  93. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/5Q9078a3 http://t.co/ZJ2rPtCt

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  94. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/jLEjPvXz

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  95. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you by @entrylevelrebel. http://t.co/U9BFesRv Cumulative stress

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  96. RT @mijori23: Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you by @entrylevelrebel. http://t.co/U9BFesRv Cumulative stress

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  97. The adverse health effects of #commuting http://t.co/YtxOJGan

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  98. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/xyUvw8fP

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  99. RT @krynsky: I spent 3 hours in my car yesterday, I concur – Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/5BnjlSDY

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  100. “Commuting is killing you”. blijf toch thuis werken. http://t.co/xBemS6cD

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  101. The other comments here identify a key issue required for telecommuting to be successful – workplace culture. Allowing employees to work remotely requires managers to manage differently and for companies to provide different resources and support. Frost and Sullivan wrote a good white paper on the topic: http://bit.ly/shLqHo

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  102. Can your #smallbiz staff do their #jobs remotely? They may do better w/o the commute. We can setup your remote #network http://t.co/DkqmCcWt

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  103. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/WAuxTU2C via @entrylevelrebel

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  104. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/vUzz6DPp via @entrylevelrebel

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  105. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/LpBB6ubP via @entrylevelrebel & @ReadyTalk

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  106. Companies, take note. Telecommuting around long enough. It works & you can trust staff. “Commuting is killing you” http://t.co/jBuu8fWX

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  107. Vouch. RT @merylkevans: Companies, take note. Telecommuting around long enough. It works & you can trust staff. http://t.co/VuppUFCr

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  108. Hooray for a zero commute, indeed.”Another reason to work remotely: http://t.co/ppQrFA7L via @bo_knows_ “

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  109. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/lZwj5qkk

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  110. Some studies waste $. People who bike 2 work R healthier.Wow! RT @inboxgroup @htoby @goodridge Commuting is killing you http://t.co/UUFou1qz

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  111. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/I4Pd9fHN #teletravail #workfromhome

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  112. Another reason to work remotely: Commuting is killing you http://t.co/Z8iIhlej

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