Desk Stretching Meets Productivity with Wakeout and Francesco D'Alessio

We all know and love Wakeout, our go-to app for quick, fun workouts right at our desks. It's the ultimate solution for those of us glued to our office chairs, providing an easy way to get the blood flowing and the joints moving. But hold onto your swivel chairs, folks, because Wakeout has just kicked things up a notch!

Wakeout has recently buddied up with none other than productivity guru, Francesco D'Alessio. Yeah, you heard that right! The man who's made productivity his life's work, who's reviewed over 200+ productivity tools over at, and who's always ahead of the curve when it comes to doing more, faster, and better. That guy!

Together, Wakeout and D'Alessio have created something phenomenal: a new routine pack, aptly named Productivity Break. This isn't your run-of-the-mill stretch routine; it's a carefully designed series of 22 desk stretches curated to ease that gnawing neck and back tension, reduce stress, and keep you energized throughout the day. Right at your desk, right when you need it.

The Productivity Break routine is a testament to the power of collaboration. Combining Wakeout's mission of encouraging movement and D'Alessio's deep understanding of productivity, this routine pack is the epitome of work-life balance. After all, as D'Alessio himself puts it, achieving this balance is about doing "80% well in multiple areas, versus 100% well in all areas."

Now enough with the introductions! It's time to get up, stretch, and conquer the day with Productivity Break. And while you're at it, don't forget to check out D'Alessio's website, ToolFinder, for more productivity tools and tips. You'll thank us later.

Why You Should Stretch and Move Often At Your Desk

Have you ever noticed how you feel sluggish and stiff after hours of being glued to your chair? Staying stationary for long periods not only hampers your productivity, but it also wreaks havoc on your body. The sedentary lifestyle can lead to a myriad of health complications such as obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.

According to a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, those who sit for long periods are at a higher risk of early death. The risk is even higher among people who sit for more than 8 hours a day and don't engage in physical activity. But fret not, there's a simple antidote to this problem: desk stretches.

Desk stretches are like a mini-massage for your body. Not only do they help ward off the ill effects of sitting all day, they also boost your energy levels, reduce stress, and increase productivity. A quick stretch can relieve muscle tension, increase flexibility and improve your posture, making you feel invigorated and focused.

Sitting for long periods is bad for your health
- Mayo Clinic

What's in the New Productivity Breaks Pack

Let's explore the new 'Productivity Break' routine pack, curated by Wakeout and Francesco D'Alessio!

  • Arm Press: Say goodbye to arm fatigue.
  • Arm Rest Dips: Perfect for strengthening those triceps.
  • Backward Arm Circles - Left & Right: Loosen up those stiff shoulders.
  • Backward Shoulder Rolls: Bring relief to your upper back.
  • Crossed Arms Side Pulls: Stretch your way to a relaxed spine.
  • Fingers Pull Back: Relieve those typing-strained fingers.
  • Forward Shoulder Rolls: Keep the shoulder stiffness at bay.
  • Head Circles - Right: Say adios to neck tension.
  • Knee Pulls: Perfect pick-me-up for your lower body.
  • Looking Up Head Turns: Time to decompress your neck.
  • Overhead Elbow Pulls: Unwind the knots in your upper arms.
  • Palms Out Stretch: Give your hands and forearms the break they deserve.
  • Seated Torso Twist: Revitalize your midsection.
  • Table-Supported Head Raises: Release the tension in your neck and shoulder area.
  • Wrist Circles - Left and Right: Keep those wrists flexible and pain-free.

With these exercises, you're all set to lower stress, release tension, and enhance productivity—all while seated at your desk. Ready to redefine your work breaks? Let's get stretching!

Interview Time with Francesco D'Alessio

How do you personally define 'work-life balance', and how do you maintain it while managing your various ventures?
Work life balance for me is about doing 80% well in multiple areas, versus 100% well in all areas. I’ve come to terms that I’m not going to succeed in every single aspect of my life, so why bother too much about getting it all 100% right, get close but try and do all well. This is how I approach work-life balance and keeping a check of all aspects like this.

As an expert in productivity tools, what are your top three go-to tools for managing your own work-life balance?
I’ve reviewed over 600+ productivity tools and scanned my eyes over hundreds more. Productivity tools are constantly evolving and the important thing is to keep to as many as you need, for as long as you can. Personally I use a calendar app, to-do list app and a note-taking app - they are Todoist for tasks, Cron Calendar for events and Mem for notes, in which I’m an investor in (disclaimer). Picking and finding productivity tools can be hard, that why we built Tool Finder recently.

Can you share your top strategies for 'getting more done' without getting burned out?
I get burnt out like many people. The best way not to get burnt out is finding the limitations of your stress and workload not purposefully, but indirectly. Over the years, I’ve found my limits and the best way to navigate that - for me, getting more done is about picking the highest level tasks off my list, versus the smaller tasks. This really does knock the biggest things off the list first and score the wins I need in. Deep work states of 90 minutes focused time help me to get into those priority tasks, this is achieved through a-sync, non interrupt work and then to avoid burnout for me, it is taking 15-20 minutes break after these intense stints to exercise, get fresh air or go on a walk.

How do you disconnect and recharge after a long day of work?
I switch off and head to hang out with my kid and wife. House chores also help that separation. Unwinding is key after an intense workday, so slowing down near the end of your workday, like an athlete going down the cool down laps, lighter tasks (less than 10mins) long as you come into the final 30mins will keep your mind cooling down and preparing for the personal life.

What advice would you give to someone struggling to find balance between their work and personal life?
Read your body and mind signs. If you are getting brain fog from over-working, maybe a better balance of sleep and mindfulness in your day will help. Equally, working out how much stress is good stress, problem solving helps grow your mind IMO, so finding what that balance is with good work stress and how to navigate it is key. Think of work like balance as finding the perfect lap (old school F1 fan here), it is never reachable, but you just need to keep going round the circuit adapting things to make things better each time - less acceleration, easing off gas in areas, avoiding bumps where you can and adapting to the weather conditions etc. That’s my take at least.

Get the New Pack

⚡️ Productivity Break by Francesco D'Alessio


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