Much unlike many a magazine editor who recommends you buy all sorts of crap that they most likely got for free, your Jezebel staff doesn't get jack shit (other than books, unsolicited). And that's how it should be. But on our own time, in our personal lives, we still buy stuff. So this is Worth It, our daily recommendation of random things that we've actually spent our own money on. These are the things we buy regularly or really like, things we'd actually tell our friends about. And now we're telling you.
In my natural state, I have no upper body strength. I routinely failed to do even one pull-up in gym class, and my best friend from junior high still remembers that I couldn't open her family's fridge. As an adult, I recognized that my sad little T-rex arms could cause problems down the road. I've taken a number of steps to fix this, but only one is so easy and convenient that I'm doing it right now. Friends, behold the hand weight.
This is less of a product recommendation than a conceptual one. I bought my hand weights at Modell's Sporting Goods, but it doesn't really matter where you get them. What matters is where you put them: on your desk. Get yourself some that are the right weight for your fitness level (I use 1 lb, but as I mentioned, I'm a T. rex), and stash those suckers right by your computer. Then, in moments of idleness at work — or, hell, moments of busy-ness — do a few curls. I also like the overhead press. A trainer could certainly give you better tips than I can, and obviously a few weights on your desk aren't a substitute for a full workout, but if you're looking for a way to work a little more exercise into your day, they're are good option. Also, doing a few lifts can be a good way to relieve workday stress.
One caveat: I keep my weights on my desk at home, so I can use them when I work from there. I don't keep a set in the office, mostly because I'm worried I'd look like a weirdo using them in front of people. But back when I worked in an office with a closable door, I used my weights there all the time (actually, I used cans of Pepsi, which is an even lower-budget option). And folks more devil-may-care than I may be perfectly willing to lift weights within view of coworkers. Your display of strength will surely intimidate them.
Valeo HW2 2-Pound Neoprene Hand Weights, $11.71 at Amazon.
Worth It only features things we paid for ourselves and actually like. Don't send us stuff.