Month: July 2012

Motivation Monday: WHY?!!

I’ve already lost track how many weeks I have been in transition on Medifast. 4? 5? I do know that I got to add in grains last week. I may have gone overboard in my excitement for cereal, bread and pasta. I’m not talking the bad-for-you stuff, but the whole grain good choice kind.

My issue? Lack of tracking.

I always knew that reaching goal was going to pose these kinds of problems. I would get complacent in my journaling and pretend like I know what I’m doing. Granted I was told that I could gain a few pounds when grains come back in the mix as my body tries to figure out what the hell I’m doing to it, but FIVE pounds? 5.5 to be exact. I about died when I saw 157 on the scale this week. Then I began to freak out. I did NOT do all this work over the last 6 months to gain it back!

My counselor calmed me down (at least enough to get a normal blood pressure reading). She said the weight gain isn’t that surprising and that my, ahem, monthly friend is probably providing some extra water bloat as well.

Okay, great. My counselor says it’s okay so why am I freaking out still? The scale at home gave me another 3 pounds higher today. 160. I am in WTF mode right now. I haven’t been eating THAT much. Or have I? 9 pounds in a week? Is that even humanly possible? Second guessing my habits, I immediately pulled out the old MyFitnessPal website and app. I started to do some good ol’ tracking. Rather then telling the site that I am in maintenance, I put it back in weight loss mode. Hard core maintenance mode, as in how many calories can I eat to lose 2 pounds a week mode. Compared to the Medifast 900 that I had been doing, I can eat 1200 and be able to lose. Or so they say. So, I’m tracking and watching every last bite that goes into my mouth because I apparently cannot be trusted.

Regardless of what is causing my rapidly rising weight gain, the important thing is that I am conscious (very conscious) of it and plan to do something about it rather than just give up and let it get out of control. I will not fail. I also plan to get daily activity. The nights that are my nights to put the kid to bed are no longer an excuse to do nothing. Even if I run a simple mile, 12 minutes of hard core cardio is better than nothing.

Other than my weight gain freak out, I had a fantastic weekend celebrating my niece’s 1st birthday. I adore my husband’s family so it was a fun day had by all.

Not sure why he was wearing his cap this way but he is hilarious and cute.
Before leaving for the birthday party, I took advantage of some rainy morning snuggling .
My poor guy was sad that he couldn’t swim with the other kids. Stupid swimmer’s ear. 
Even his 96 year old Great Grandma couldn’t cheer him up.
Thankfully, I found a bat and some balls and we played some baseball. 
Of course, it wouldn’t be a first birthday party without the cake smash! 

Despite my failure on the scale, as you can see, it was still a pretty winner of a weekend!

Downtown Life

Changing jobs is hard enough. New faces. New duties. New rules. Tack on a whole new lifestyle? Shock.

My brilliant photographer husband took this photo of
Minneapolis when he was working Downtown 

You see, I have had a cozy job in the suburbs for the last decade. I could see Downtown off in the distance, but it was a life I had no idea about other than random trips to MN Twins games and the plethora of concerts I attend every year. I could get in my car and drive off on a moment’s notice. I could easily schedule doctor’s appointments, Weight Watchers & Medifast weigh ins and probably my favorite part: shop at the mall. Those who grew up in the burbs, you get my fascination and love for malls.

Starting a new job in Downtown Minneapolis has been a bit of a culture shock for me. I take the bus nearly every day which I find… interesting. There is definitely a set of rules to be followed:

  • You can sit where you want, but always move in towards the window so others don’t have to climb over you and so everyone can have a seat as the bus starts getting full. 
  • Ladies first. Most of the professional men I bus with will give up their place in line to get on the bus and even there seat if it means giving one to a lady. 
  • Keep your shit out of the isle. It’s a violation and the bus driver will stop the bus and make you move your crap before he starts going again. 
  • Don’t talk to strangers. It’s weird, but unless you are long time co-workers or friends, nobody talks on the bus.
  • Breath mints or gum people. Please spare your neighbors on the bus by having good hygiene. 
  • Probably the #1 rule: have your bus fare/bus card ready. Nothing pisses off a crabby bus of commuters than the unorganized fool holding everyone up. 
I have also noticed some things about behaviors both in commuting and around Downtown: 
  • Only a handful of people jaywalk. It is against the law and you can get a ticket. Why is it that people refuse to wait the extra minute for the sign to change to cross the dumb street?! 
  • The majority of people walk around with ear buds/headphones on. Not only do they wear them on the bus, but they wear them virtually everywhere while walking around. 
  • Some people are genuinely rude. They will walk right the hell into you if you get in their way with zero apology. 
  • Many sleep on the bus. Like full on, head-bobbin nap time. It’s very tempting. 
I’ve only just begun to scratch the surface of all things awesomely available in Minneapolis. Yes, there is shopping, but on a very large scale. The Macy’s in Downtown Minneapolis is astonishing. I physically got lost when attempting a lunch break shopping trip. I am thankful there is an Ann Taylor in my building, expensive, yes, but you can usually find some goodies on the clearance rack. There is also a Gap & Banana Republic just a couple skyways away. The food in Downtown Minneapolis is something to be reckoned with. There is no lack of originality or options. Or temptations. I made a deal with myself that I would only eat out once a week and my rule is that I have to try something new and it must be healthy. I have had a delicious salad at D’Amico, a club sandwich from an amazing little Mediterranean deli and I wandered the Farmer’s Market only to discover the phenomenal deliciousness that is Cindy’s Cinnamon Roasted Almonds. I am allowed only a small pouch of them because a large? They would never make it home to my husband. 
The Farmer’s Market is total treat and it is probably one of my favorite things about working Downtown. Every Thursday it is a sight to be scene. Nicollet Mall filled with vendors selling amazing farm fresh produce, stunning flowers and even bread and honey. It is a total people watching spectacle. I love it. 
If there is anything I have learned in my first few weeks of working in the city it is this: 
  1. Don’t make any assumptions– give something a try before you rule it out. I never thought in a million years I would prefer the bus to the comfort of my car, but I do. I love my 30 minutes of relaxation. I love whizzing by the bumper to bumper traffic. I love catching up on Facebook, Twitter, and all my With Friends games with zero distraction. I love listening to my workout music to get me pumped up for the evening exercise yet to come. I’m so glad I gave it a shot. 
  2. Buy comfortable shoes! I think the reasons are obvious but Downtown is no place for uncomfortable shoes. 

Taking this job was a decision that was way outside the box for me. I am proud that I made this choice! I am really loving my new job and my company so far and hope that I will continue to feel that way five, even ten years from now.

Embracing a New Life

Me in my new cube. 

Yes, my blog has been neglected. Yes, I have a good excuse.

I started a new job on July 2nd. The first week was… interesting. I went from scared and miserable to feeling like everything was going to be okay. Fast forward three weeks later: everything is AWEsome. The first week jitters were short-lived as was the lack for work and projects. In just my 2nd week on the job, I was brought in to consult on a very visible corporate initiative. I’m excited for the opportunity but confess I feel like I’m sort of a lost puppy. I went from a small-company world where I had control to this large-company world with policies and procedures for everything. While daunting, I am determined to make a valuable impact.

I have also very much embraced the Downtown Minneapolis working world. I’ve discovered some yummy skyway eats and treats and I fell in love with Thursday’s Farmer’s Market. I also confess that I love taking the bus. The transit station is about 15 minutes from my house, and it cuts my total commute time by about half. The people who ride are about as normal as people come and it drops me off and picks me up just a block or two from my office. My bus and Downtown life annoyances are a post for another day.

One of the things I have loved the most about my new gig is the opportunity to “reinvent” myself. If I ever wore dresses or skirts at my last job it was an indication of a job interview or trying to “impress” someone. Here? It is the norm for most people (perhaps a large corporate office thing?). It has been hotter than the sun lately and it has been so nice to wear cute cotton dresses and fun skirts. I feel comfortable, pretty and important! Did I mention the Ann Taylor store in my building??

There are still many adjustments I am making. I start later and get home later. I am now in charge of dropping off the kidlet in the morning as opposed to picking him up which as most of you mommies (and daddies too) know is really the shitty part of the bargain. Is there anything worse than having to bolt from your sad child because they don’t want you to leave? Or is there anything worse than their being totally indifferent (doesn’t he MISS me??). Since I now get home later, we are also eating dinner later. We have started keeping the kiddo up an extra half hour so I can make sure to muster up all the quality time I can. Dishes stay undone until after his bedtime. DVR shows go unwatched. I worry that these “changes” will have a negative effect on him. He’s been sleeping like crap lately. Is it my fault? So, despite the awesomeness that is my new job, there is a significant level of guilt involved in accepting it. Guilt over choosing my career over my child. Guilt for putting the impetus of making dinner and childcare post-work on my husband. I’m sure this guilty feeling will get better in time. My new company is shockingly flexible and actually cares about work/life balance. It has taken some getting used to coming and going as I please and I still am afraid to push that envelope. It was such a point of contention at my last job- it’s hard to shake yourself of that brainwashing. I know in time, this will be our new way of life. It will just take some time to adjust.

Speaking of the new me… I am in my 3rd week of transition with Medifast and it is going well. I have been able to add vegetables, fruit and dairy back into my diet. Did I mention how happy I am about the fruit? Fruit has been a go-to healthy snack for me all my years on Weight Watchers, so getting the A-OK to start eating it again has been nice. I don’t feel compelled to grab other naughty snacks, because having a banana is truly a treat for me! I thought I’d be really pumped for dairy, but strangely haven’t been compelled to add that much of it back into my diet. So far, so good my weight has held steady fluctuating between 151 – 153. The great part about transition and maintenance? No more freaking out over the scale. No more beating myself up over the numbers. I’m not saying keeping the weight off will be easy, I just finally don’t feel so stressed out over it anymore. I’m in a good place. I’m happy. It’s weird to start this job in this body. Nobody here knows me any other way. While I enjoyed my former colleagues seeing my transition, it is nice to know that this is the way people expect me to be. By setting my healthy standard from the beginning, I know people don’t expect me to be any other way and I don’t feel guilty for saying no to treats. 

So yes, this is the new me. I am really proud of all that I have accomplished in 2012!!

Wordless Wednesday: God Bless America, Preschool Style

Happy 4th of July from my family to yours!

Motivation Monday: A Tough Day

Today was my first day at my new job. It was a tough day.

I was excited to start a new journey and still am; however, first days are hard. Despite years of experience that has filled me with knowledge, you walk into a new company and are pretty clueless. You don’t know anyone. You don’t know where to find anything. You basically feel like a total idiot. Not to mention zero access to personal e-mail or social media (all uber blocked at my new company), I just felt cut off from the world I feel like I needed to be connected to. I’m not even remotely used to such a long commute. I took mass transit for the first time and I both loved it and hated it. Loved it because I had 30 minutes to just sit and relax. Hated it for the same reasons (ha!) and the fact I felt like I was at the mercy of the light rail train and its schedule.

To top it off, I didn’t make it home until aft 6 tonight (compared to the 4:30 that I am used to, it may as well have been 10p at night). Getting home that late meant missing seeing my boy. He had swimming at 6:15 so when he came home, it was already time for bed. I soaked up every last bit of hugs and cuddling I could out of him. I think part of my heartache with getting home late had to do with spending SO much time with him last week, just the two of us. With my husband out of town last week, my world revolved around Jack and our home. I loved it. Maybe a little too much.

I know over time that staying at home wouldn’t fulfill me the way I would want it to. I love being a professional and I love working in marketing. It is so important for me to remember that there will never have to be another first day at this particular job or this company again. The only way to go is up and that is exactly what I intend to do.

So I’m going to wipe away the tears and the sad, guilty feelings. I’m going to take a deep breath and hold my head high. I’ve got this.