When we last rounded up our staff's Weekly Upgrades, our editors were meditating, colour coding our inboxes, and finding ways to improve upon our morning coffee.
This week, we're easing ourselves back into the gym, exploring new holiday options, finding the best music for Getting Stuff Done, and buying wine that comes in cans.
What upgrades did you make this week? Let us know in the comments.
Expand your idea of a holiday destination
I chose my destination for the mini holiday I took last week by plugging my dates and price range into Kayak's flight explorer. I eliminated anything that was too close (boring) or too far (I was bringing a couple of impatient children) and ended up flying to a small town in a neighbouring state that I never would have thought to visit.
The destination was OK (Hagerstown, Maryland - def check out Discovery Station if you have kids), but honestly the best part was the tiny aeroplane that took us there. I never would have had a chance to ride it if I had chosen the destination first.
Beth Skwarecki, Health Editor
Find a new work playlist
I've been listening to a lot of prog rock while I work. It's complex and loud enough to drown out office noise, and the long, often instrumental tracks are less distracting than a bunch of three-minute pop songs. I'm also getting into the rock/art/new-age work of Mike Oldfield - he has a half-dozen albums that are all variations on the same structure from his first album, Tubular Bells.
Nick Douglas, Staff Writer
Invest in your own development
I attended a writing workshop this weekend that has me itching to try out new ideas. It was an investment in myself, and it definitely paid off - I was feeling a bit overwhelmed the past few weeks, but now I'm energised and up for trying new and ambitious stories. Plus, I met a ton of cool women who had great ideas I can't wait to see come to fruition.
Alicia Adamczyk, Staff Writer
Explore the wide world of canned wine
This week, I bought a can of Pinot Noir. I'm not sure I'd consider that an upgrade in taste, but I'll report back once I've cracked it open. It is, however, a significant upgrade in terms of portability and storage. It takes up less space on my desk than a full bottle, and its silvery exterior is just as pretty to look at. I also upgraded my geek life by asking my parents to ship me some Star Wars posters I bought in 1997, which I'm hoping to have The Emperor sign this weekend at the Silicon Valley Comic Con. (Hi Woz.)
David Murphy, Senior Tech Editor
Treat fitness as a marathon, not a sprint
This week, I went back to the gym for the first time in years. My approach to exercise has typically been to push myself very hard at first, then inevitably peter out as I get increasingly sore and uninspired.
This time, I was more lenient with myself, and I'm less discouraged and achy several days later. I decided to stop reminding myself how much I used to exercise in high school, because it's simply not helpful. So far, I'm on course to build a prolonged, more enjoyable routine with the gym, which is more important to me than getting SWOLE.
Adam Powers, Video Producer
Step back from your elaborate skincare routine
In spite of using various elaborate serums and cleansers recently, I haven't been loving the way my skin looked and felt. I realised that, at the moment, the problem seemed to be that I was unnecessarily fussing with my skin, then adding more stuff on to try to fix that, rather than just leaving it the hell alone.
All of which is to say I've gone back to an old favourite: Using Pond's cold cream as a makeup remover and cleanser at night, putting some moisturiser on when I'm done, and calling it good. I'll probably have to re-evaluate this routine once the weather gets warmer, but for now, it's a big improvement. I wish I'd done this before springing for the fancy, ineffective retinol serum, though.
Virginia K. Smith, Managing Editor