Banana Boot Camp

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Artist and FruitGuys Banana Beth Lisick started her journey on the road to self-improvement on a New Years Day. Her initial goal was to learn to do the splits—and that was just the beginning of a quest that turned into her great book Helping Me Help Myself, about a year spent on self-help programs. The new year is a traditional time to start a fitness program. At the FruitGuys HQ in South San Francisco, Nicole, the voice of FruitGuys Customer Service, jumped on the resolution bandwagon and spearheaded a “get fit” initiative for the whole office she dubbed "ShapeUp FruitGuys.” She recruited over half the office into the enterprise.

ShapeUp FruitGuys has its roots in the ShapeUp San Francisco program that promotes healthy nutrition and physical activity in San Francisco neighborhoods. The FruitGuys have lent time and a ton of bananas to ShapeUp events over the years. Many other major metro areas have fun fitness events through their parks and rec departments, such as BeFit New York City.

Nicole got the ShapeUp FruitGuys program going by turning to Rebecca, our fruit buyer. Rebecca not only juggles tangelos and tangerines during the day but is a marathon runner. They came up with an office program that includes an outdoor boot camp near the office and lunchtime workout at a nearby gym. Rebecca leads the group’s core strength training and light cardio workouts.

"Everyone sets their own goals, whether it be stress management, increased energy or weight loss. And they keep track how they want, if its how they feel or how their clothes fit, or in pounds," said Rebecca, affectionately known as 'Captain.' Most of the ShapeUp FruitGuys group goes to the gym three times a week, but some follow their own programs. CEO Chris Mittelstaedt pursues a weekly regime of weight lifting, running, and cycling. Dan, our other fruit buyer, bikes to work, as do many other employees - even in the fog. Marketing Manager Erin works it out at home with Wii Fit. Chrissy in billing uses a home treadmill and Amanda also does a walking course near her home.

Even a company that works on health and nutrition issues can use a little help. We're so lucky to have a Cheerleader like Nicole to corral our desires for more physical fitness into an organized effort. All you need is one person and The FruitGuys to start your program. Office Wellness can be simple or comprehensive—we provide valuable resources on wellness, health, and nutrition with your monthly editions of The Berkley Wellness Newsletter in every FruitCrate. FruitGuys customers can also get free pedometers for their own WalkFit programs. Just take a tip from Nicole and, as The King said to Alice in wonderland, “Begin at the beginning.”

- Heidi Lewis


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Our online magazine offers a taste of workplace culture, trends, and healthy living. It features recipes for easy, delicious work meals and tips on quick office workouts. It's also an opportunity to learn about our GoodWorks program, which helps those in need in our communities and supports small, sustainable farms.