10 Exercises You Can Do with a Desk Chair

This post is sponsored by Wonderful Pistachios. All opinions—as always!—are my own. I appreciate your support of the brands that make this blog possible. 🙂

When it comes to staying healthy at work, I realize I have an advantage. In many ways, being healthy is my work. Teaching group fitness keeps me active, and when I’m not doing that I have the flexibility to work from home (or anywhere) and schedule my own workouts whenever is best that day.

The irony of being in the fitness industry, however, is that as you spend more and more time helping others get their workouts in, you have less and less time for your own. There was a time when I was teaching way too many classes a week and I found myself exhausted and completely run down. Now I know my teaching limit and stick to it, but back then I’d find myself without the energy to do my own workouts. And the more tired I became, the more I craved sugar and caffeine. I had overextended myself and was becoming less fit.

Another challenge for me that comes with working from home is the snacking. My desk is five steps from my kitchen and my go-to method of procrastination has always been eating (I go HAM on the snacks when I have a blogging deadline haha). My refrigerator and pantry are full of healthy foods so it’s not that what I’m snacking on is a big deal, it’s just the amount. If I have a family-size bag of trail mix in front of me, for example, I’ll absentmindedly eat the whole thing by the handful while answering emails. Oopsies.

For this reason, when I have a heavy work load, I’m all about keeping snacks around that aren’t as easy to eat mindlessly. It sounds silly, but if I have to work a little harder for it, it slows me down and forces me to really focus and enjoy the food. Oranges (pause and peel), cherries (spit out the pits), and pistachios (crack open each shell) are among my favorites.

Wonderful Pistachios, The Mindful Nut, are one of the highest-protein, highest-fiber nuts around. They’re also one of the lowest-fat and lowest-calorie nuts (which is why they also call it The Fit Nut),, making them a great alternative to snacks high in added sugars and saturated fat (almost 90% of the fat found in pistachios is unsaturated). I love the shelled packs so I don’t rush through my snack, but they also come in a no-shells variety which is great if you want to use them as a salad topper without having to remove shells.

Wonderful Pistachios has a giveaway and coupon for you guys (scroll down), but before I get to that, I thought it’d be fun to share some exercises you can do with a desk chair—in case snacking healthy at work isn’t enough for you. 😉

10 Exercises You Can Do with a Desk Chair

You don’t necessarily have to do these at your desk (if you have cube mates that might elicit a few stares), but these are a few of my favorite exercises using a chair.

Try picking five of the above exercises and performing them in a circuit: 45 seconds of work / 15 seconds of rest. Complete the circuit two – four times for a quick office (or at-home!) workout.

#WorkSmartSnackSmart Giveaway

Wonderful Pistachios wants to see how you Snack Smarter at work. All you have to do to enter is post a photo on Instagram of your healthy workspace and include the hashtags #WorkSmartSnackSmart and #WPGiveaway and tag @GetCrackin.

Ten randomly selected winners will get a case of No Shells Roasted & Salted Wonderful Pistachios Shelled, Roasted and Salted and a case of the Roasted & Salted Wonderful Pistachios Multipack, Roasted and Salted. One grand prize winner will get an office refresh complete with Wonderful Pistachios and other Wonderful products for a full year and a custom Wonderful Pistachios branded refrigerator. Full contest terms here.

If you don’t win, you can still save with the discount code 20SNCKSMRT9. That will get you 20% off either 32oz Roasted Salted Wonderful Pistachios or 6oz shelled Wonderful Pistachios through 7/28. Promo code valid while supplies last.

What’s your favorite workday snack?

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Wonderful Pistachios. The opinions and text are all mine.

Healthy Martha’s Vineyard Guide: Where to Workout & Eat This Summer

Healthy Martha's Vineyard Guide: Where to Workout & EatI talk about the Vineyard in passing all the time on the blog, but haven’t ever done a dedicated post with recommendations. This is way overdue! For anyone new to the blog, I grew up on Martha’s Vineyard. And to clarify, I didn’t grow up summering there—my family lives there, I went to high school there, lived there year-round, I’m from Martha’s Vineyard. There’s a big difference. 😉

For anyone who may be planning to spend a weekend or week on the island this summer, I thought it’d be fun to put together all my recommendations for where to workout and grab healthy food. Of course you’ll need to balance out all this health stuff with plenty of ice cream and Dirty Bananas at Nancy’s (it’s vacation, after all), but we can save that for another post.

My healthy Martha’s Vineyard guide:

Where to Workout on Martha’s Vineyard

Yoga

Healthy Guide to Martha's Vineyard: Where to Workout & Eat

what, you don’t practice yoga in gladiator sandals? 😉

I’ve taken two yoga classes on the Vineyard so far this summer and really enjoyed both. The first was a hot vinyasa class at One Hot Yoga in Vineyard Haven and the other was a regular vinyasa at Yoga on the Vine in Edgartown (<– this studio also offers Stand Up Paddle board yoga at the beach!).

While I haven’t done it myself, I’ve heard talk of a goat yoga class in Chilmark in which baby goats run around frolicking as you practice and apparently it sells out weeks in advance. My mission for summer 2017/life is to do this.

There are several other yoga studios on the island and the website Martha’s Vineyard Yoga Classes actually aggregates them all so that you can see what’s offered that day across all studios. My friends love the Yoga Barn in West Tisbury (doesn’t the space look beautiful?!) but I haven’t been personally.

Group Fitness

Outside of gyms (Mansion House, YMCA) which offer group classes, there aren’t a ton of options for fitness studios on the island—that I’m aware of anyway. Evolve in Edgartown offers Pilates mat, reformer and tower classes, as well as barre, TRX, Pound and indoor cycling. I’ve only taken their indoor cycling class but loved it. I was so impressed by the studio—just as nice if not nicer than a studio you’d find in the city! There’s also a CrossFit in Vineyard Haven and this website aggregates all the fitness classes offered on the island so I’d check there for any I might be missing.

I want to focus this post on local businesses but I should mention that this summer SoulCycle is doing a pop-up in Edgartown for the month of August.

Running

My favorite place to run in the summer is along State Beach early enough in the morning to avoid the beating sun. There’s a bike path along Beach Road the entire length of beach and you can finish your run by jumping into the ocean for a dip (the BEST after a hot summer run!).

If you’re worried about getting lost, there are convenient bike paths along the major roads down island (Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road, County Road, the half of Barnes Road by the airport).

If you’re looking to run through the woods, there are trails throughout the Southern Woodlands and around the airport in the State Forest (<– these paths are also paved). There are wooded options up island as well (we used to run loops around Peaked Hill for cross country practice in high school) but they’re harder to find and not as convenient as down island.

Where to Get Healthy Food on Martha’s Vineyard

Grab ‘n Go Food

Veggie wrap from Edgartown Meat & Fish Market on Martha's Vineyard.

veggie wrap from Edgartown Meat & Fish

My mom and I are obsessed with Not Your Sugar Mamas in Vineyard Haven. You might recognize the name from their line of chocolate bars, but they also have a little cafe now that serves up organic, vegan, gluten-free deliciousness. For breakfast they have smoothies, oatmeal and smoothie bowls (you know I’m all about that acai bowl life!). For lunch they have sandwiches (the chickpea salad sandwich is OMG), grain bowls, soups and flatbreads. I’d recommend budgeting a little time if you go there—the line can be long and they prepare everything to order so there’s usually a wait.

Another great spot if you’re looking for a massive menu of organic smoothies, smoothie bowls and juice is Blissed Out on Main Street in VH.

Rosewater in Edgartown has a great menu of sandwiches (all of which can be made in bowl form instead) and an array of prepared foods. They have a small seating area so you can choose to dine in (you still order at the counter) as well as take things to go. In their refrigerated section they have a delicious chia seed pudding with granola that I’ll grab for a quick breakfast.

If you’re vacationing on the island without a car, this one might be a little out of the way, but Scottish Bakehouse in VH has local eggs and meat, lots of prepared foods and yummy sandwiches and lunch dishes to order. They also have some great vegan options and, as the name implies, plenty of baked goods (not exactly “health” foods but good for the soul!).

*As a side note, I’m pretty sure Scottish Bakehouse breakfast sandwiches saved my life a few hungover mornings in my early 20’s. 😉 And speaking of breakfast sandwiches, does anyone reading this remember Biga?! Best breakfast sandwiches of all time. We’d skip school during study hall in high school to go get them. RIP Biga.

I’ve only been a couple times, but 7a Foods in West Tisbury is another great option. When possible, everything is sourced locally and the menu varies with the seasons accordingly. Think sandwiches made to order, prepared foods and baked goods.

My go-to stop for picking up lunch on the way to South Beach is Edgartown Meat & Fish. Not only can you buy beer, ice and snacks for your cooler, but their wraps are the bomb.com. I always get the veggie wrap (pictured above).

If you’re looking for sushi to go, they have a chef at Edgartown Meat & Fish and I’d also highly recommend The Net Result in VH.

Sit-Down Meals

Indonesian Gado Gado Salad from Little House, MVThere are so many good restaurants on the Vineyard and you can find something (or several somethings) healthy on the menu at most, so I don’t really know how to narrow down this last section. I’m just going to share a few of my favorite spots that serve up quality food and tell you what I usually order.

For breakfast I love Among the Flowers in Edgartown. It has traditional diner menu items (eggs, home fries, etc.) but better quality. It’s not all bathed in grease and the eggs don’t look like they were poured from a box. You can get fresh avocado on the side, which is a small details but what can I say—I’m basic and this is major bonus in my eyes. In addition to your standard breakfast options, they have this delicious breakfast bowl of veggies, lentils, avocado and fried eggs that I love (but I usually order it without the greens because I find they make it a little runny). Great lunch and dinner menu here, too!

As I mentioned above, Rosewater (also in Edgartown) has good breakfast sandwiches and a delicious breakfast bowl option. You order at the counter but there’s seating available as well.

For lunch I love Slice of Life in Oak Bluffs. Their salads are the bomb.com and big enough to fill you up. My go-to is usually the Asian Salmon Salad. Other than that, I’m usually a grab-n-go-to-the-beach girl when it comes to lunch (see above for options).

For dinner, I don’t even know where to start—so many options. I go to Little House in Vineyard Haven with my parents frequently. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner but I’ve only been for dinner (the Indonesian Gado Gado Salad is my jam). State Road in West Tisbury and Beach Road in VH are awesome. I haven’t been yet, but I hear rave reviews about Behind the Book Store in Edgartown. If you’re heading way up island and want something a little fancier, Outermost Inn.

Did I miss anything? Add your healthy Vineyard recommendations in the comments! I haven’t lived on the island for a decade now (yikes I’m getting old) so my knowledge of new businesses is limited to summer visits. I’m sure I missed a few gems!

 

My Favorite Things: June

Hi friends! With the long weekend approaching, I’ve got a (very) shortened edition of Favorites for you this month. Tomorrow I’m heading down to the Cape and after a day or two there it’ll be on to the Vineyard. Gotta love the 4th of July in Massachusetts! I’m taking this coming week off from teaching and for the most part blogging, but I do have a workout scheduled for you guys on Monday so be sure to check back here for that! 🙂

June Favorites

Think Dirty

I’ve had this app for a while, but for some reason am just now really using it. You can scan or search for any beauty/skincare product and it will break down the ingredients and any health concerns associated with them. I’m in the market for a new sunscreen so I’ve been vetting out my options using the app. Naturopathica has an awesome SPF 17 that I’ve been using for my face for a while now, but it’s expensive AF so I need something else for my body. I’m going to try out Beautycounter’s SPF 30 and will keep you guys posted on how I like it.

Invisibilia

If you like This American Life, you’ll love NPR’s Invisibilia podcast. It’s about “the invisible forces that control human behavior”—so it shares stories about ideas, beliefs, emotions and other intangibles. Really well done, engaging stories, and makes you think. It’s a wonderful listen!

Father’s Day Weekend on the Vineyard

tank & leggings c/o Fierce + Regal

I spent a long weekend at home on the Vineyard for Father’s Day and it was so wonderful. I did a class at One Hot Yoga, enjoyed drinks on the water in OB for Harbor Fest, ate some delicious vegan food at Not Your Sugar Mamas, took lots of naps, and even got some blogging work done. The weather didn’t give us a beach day, but it didn’t matter—I always love being on the island.

That’s all for me! Enjoy your long weekend!