Jan. 8 2020
Allison Lee once drank five gallons of water in three days. As the CEO and Founder of Hemster, an on-demand tailoring service for retailers and shoppers, she’s always looking to fit wellness into her life. We spoke with Allison about “brain rest,” butter beans, and phone separation anxiety.
Please list some bad habits you’ve cut from routine:
- Hitting the snooze button.
- Ignoring or not responding to personal texts or calls.
- Eating out three meals in a row.
Please list some good habits you’ve added:
- I charge my phone very far from my bed. This helps me in two ways: (1) I can fall asleep without worrying about my phone ringing and (2) I have to physically get up to turn off my alarm.
- I use Saturdays as a “brain rest” day. I try to do minimal thinking, especially about anything related to work—not even brainstorming or thinking about problems. I try to focus on the physical parts of my life every Saturday.
- I replaced my normal carb-y breakfast with a small protein shake, which I drink as I walk to work. It saves so much time, and I don’t feel sleepy after.
How do you keep yourself balanced during the day?
My Head of Ops and I are known to drink a ton of water. We went through a five gallon jug in three days. Being physically hydrated really helps, especially if you are spending long hours in a dry office.
Separately, if my meetings end sooner than [planned], I use the remaining time away from the computer. I walk around the office, drink more water, stretch, etc. It gives me 3–5 minutes of little breaks during my day.
How do you de-stress and relax?
I love explosive workouts. I tried yoga and Pilates and, while they were great, I needed something more stimulating to really get into the zone. I try to go boxing twice a week, and it helps me release any anxiety or frustration.
How many hours of sleep do you get a night?
Because I used to split my time between New York and San Francisco, that three-hour time difference was my arch-nemesis. Typically, I try to get at least seven hours of sleep, and I have been getting more and more protective of my sleep schedule. I try to not schedule many dinner meetings (I’m all about the morning juice or coffee), and I use melatonin to deal with jet lag.
Do you have a favorite wellness trend?
I always recommend that all my founder friends take one FULL day off a week (like Saturday). And when you take it off, you’re not just physically away from work, but also mentally and emotionally turning off that side of your brain. I find that having that healthy distance from my work and professional performance helps me develop my self-identity from a more holistic angle.
Is there a cool food you like to incorporate into your diet?
Giant butter beans. They’re mild and delicious and high in protein and fiber, so you can really add them to any recipe for an immediate nutrient boost.