Home again

Today was a pretty great day as far as work days go!

The hotel I stayed in last night didn’t have a free breakfast…so I just had to order room service.  SIGH.


Now, I know you’ve heard about the Jillian Michaels “pour candle wax on stuff you don’t want to eat at dinner” tactic.  I’m not that drastic, but if I KNOW something’s on my plate and I don’t need/really want it (but I’ll probably ingest it anyway if it’s there), I dump it.  So, I dumped the orange juice.  That was 200 calories-ish right there I didn’t need that wouldn’t fill me up, so down the sink it went.  I had a small bowl of raisin bran, two pieces of sourdough toast, and about half the fruit bowl.  It was delicious!

Then I went to my first and only school for the day and I had a lovely time.  Of course, to complete my tour of Operation Beautiful notes, I left one there, too!

Lunch (again) was eaten in the car.  And it was exactly the same as yesterday.

I swear Subway is not paying me.

Anyway, let me explain my so-called hierarchy of eating.  I basically try to approach eating by prioritizing as follows:

  1. First, I try to find a healthy food in a reasonable calorie range (like if I’m looking for a snack out of anything in the world, I’ll pick some fruit, or yogurt).
  2. If I can’t find anything healthy in a reasonable calorie range, I will eat something high-calorie but healthy (like, for example, I’ll choose trail mix over a candy bar.)
  3. If I can’t find anything healthy, I’ll choose less-healthy food in a reasonable calorie range (this is where I classify Subway).
  4. If I really have no other alternative, I’ll choose unhealthy food that’s high calorie.

This hierarchy is why I’ve eaten Subway for lunch the last two days.  My options on the road have basically been your standard fast-food joints.  I don’t consider any of them particularly healthy or nourishing, but I don’t HAVE to necessarily waste a lot of calories on it.  This lunch was probably about 500 calories, as opposed to a value meal from McDonalds, which could be 900+ calories.  So, it’s not a category 1 or 2 food like I prefer, but at least it’s not going to make me gain weight.

Anyway, moving on.  I also snacked on a Luna Bar (Chocolate Raspberry!) on the road:

I made it home safely and was greeted with three fun packages!  I’m going to wait to tell you about two of them, but one of my lovely bridesmaids sent me a Christmas present!

Yay!  I’ve secretly been wanting some Bride related apparel but didn’t have the motivation to buy it for myself.  I predict I will be wearing this while we get ready the morning of the wedding.  I love her!  Thanks, Lindsey!

Tonight’s plans include washing the beagle hair out of our sheets since Milhouse apparently took over my side of the bed while I was gone, catching up with T, and relaxing.  Tomorrow I’m picking up our wedding bands and will post pictures as soon as I have them!  I’m also either going to run or do a workout DVD tomorrow–hold me to that!

Do you have any food priorities or hierarchies?  Tell me about them!

Tired pants

I’m home safe and exhausted.  There is not much to report, other than that I was oddly proselytized to twice and ate a lunch that was entirely too greasy and now my stomach is upset.  Also, lots of people in Nebraska are blonde.  It’s disconcerting.

I will, however, post this adorable picture T texted me.  Southpaw as Milhouse’s pillow:

I’m skipping a workout today.  I’m sore, and exhausted, and I want to spend time with T and the pups!  Tomorrow’s a new day.  I’ll be back tomorrow with more substance!

And get excited for a very exciting blog announcement coming hopefully on Friday or Monday!


Just call me Jack Kerouac

Because I’m on the road.  (Awful, I know.)

This morning started bright and early.  I wanted to be on the road by 7 a.m. because the trip to Nebraska was going to take about 3.5 hours and I had to be there by 11.  I had some toast with almond butter and was on the way!

Around 8:30, I started feeling drowsy, which is bad when you’re driving.  So, because it was my only option, I stopped at a McDonalds near the Missouri/Iowa border for an iced coffee.  I would use the words “iced coffee” lightly, because this was really just coffee-flavored skim milk.  I am a coffee wuss, and usually add sweetener and cream or milk to mine, and I didn’t need to add anything to this.  It was TOO sweet, and I only drank half, but it did its job of keeping me awake.  And full!  I was burping after half of this I was so stuffed-feeling.  Must be all the protein in the milk?  And hey, since I’m traveling for work, I’m at least not paying for it!

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I finally arrived at my destination and did my thing for a few hours (I ate a Clif Kidz bar as a snack–love them!), and then hit up Panera for a late lunch and to leech off their free Wi-Fi.  I was starving, so I got a bowl of soup that came with bread and a yogurt parfait (and a cookie for later!).  I only ate half the soup though–it was kind of gelatinous and gross.  However, I love these yogurt parfaits with Stonyfield yogurt, strawberries, and maple pecan granola.  It’s nice to know I can get my daily yogurt parfait fix when I’m traveling!

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Yes, I am a diet soda junkie.  I try to limit it to one a day, occasionally two.  It could be worse.

Then I went to my second school, where I was supposed to give a PowerPoint presentation to a group of eager future law students in this very nice room:

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But nobody showed up!  That makes me sad.

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Obviously, I sat around taking pictures of myself for a commercially reasonable period of time, and then left to drive to my hotel.  Hey look, it’s my sorority!

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I arrived at my hotel tired, but ready to MOVE after sitting all day long.  Luckily my room was nice and roomy, and I did most of Jillian Michaels’  “Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism” workout.  I enjoyed it a lot!  I love kickboxing, and this workout incorporated lots of kicks and punches and such.  I have to say, I think this is the perfect workout for travelers–you don’t need any equipment, and it’s basically body-weight cardio exercises.  I will DEFINITELY be doing this again!  I can feel my abs screaming at me already.

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Now, I am off to scrounge for dinner.  I predict I will spend my evening watching Biggest Loser and reading blogs in my roomy king-size bed!

What’s your favorite part of traveling?

On the road again…

I have to say, almost one month in, I really really like my job.  The people are nice, and aside from the very cold office, it’s a great place to be.  My work is interesting and challenging but not particularly stressful and the benefits are great.

Tomorrow I’m starting kind of a new facet of work.  I’m officially entering the world of the business traveler!  Part of my job will be traveling around random parts of the U.S., promoting our school and meeting with interested students.  I have to say, I am really excited to start this.  I’ve always been kind of a solitary worker, and the idea of getting paid for two days to drive around the countryside is really appealing.  Bonus:  I’ll probably work the equivalent of two and a half workdays in just two calendar days, and my employer wants me to avoid overtime, so I’m going to take a half day on Friday!

That said, there’s a whole host of challenges that come with this.  Staying in hotels, being tired on the road, having to eat out…who’s to say what it will do to me?  I’m trying to go in with a plan–pack healthy snacks, use hotel gyms, keep equipment-free workout DVDs loaded on my laptop–but honestly, who knows.

To get in the spirit, tonight I did a new workout–Jillian Michaels’ No More Trouble Zones.  I am a big fan of Jillian’s and saw great results when I did the 30 Day Shred in August 2008.   The bonus of working out at home?  You don’t have to wash a workout shirt, because sports bras are a-okay!

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And you need minimal space.  Yoga mat not even required.

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As all of Jillian’s workouts are (which is why I’m a fan), this was HARD!  I did abotu 35 minutes and then had to stop.  I theoretically could have done more, but my stomach was rumbling since it was right before dinner.  I know I’ll be sore tomorrow!  I’m planning to do her weight-free new DVD tomorrow in my hotel room, or maybe hit up the hotel gym if it’s nice.  Who knows?

In other news, I bought new wedding earrings.  Thoughts?

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I’m not TOTALLY sold on them, but they match well and I think I like them.

What are your on the road fitness tips?


Well, today was certainly not as I expected.

Remember how I thought yesterday’s race went so well?  Well, okay, it did and it felt great during it.  But then, afterwards, I felt like I’d been hit by a truck.  More specifically—as soon as I sat down at home, I pretty much could not get up and move.  My quads were super crampy (I suspect I was a bit dehydrated) and I was exhausted.  And even though I’d eaten a huge breakfast for lunch, I was starving all day.

So, yesterday afternoon, I took a nap and felt a bit better.  And then as the night went on, I started wheezing more and more, and feeling my chest get tight.  Talk about scary.  I decided just to go to bed and see if I felt better in the morning.

Well, I didn’t.  I was wheezy all morning, and from wheezing, I get the nice side effect of my heart racing because I feel like I can’t breathe. T also mentioned that my wheezing woke him up because he thought something was wrong with the dog (thanks, honey).  First thing I did when I got to work was call the doctor to see if I could get in before Friday, but, of course not.  (It sucks being a new patient.)

I don’t know what is wrong with me.  I strongly suspect asthma, since this has been going on for so long—at least the last month or so.  But I won’t have any confirmation or peace of mind until Friday, and so, inadvisably, I will be scarily wheezing my way through this week.  I feel slightly better this afternoon, but my legs and hips are still incredibly sore and I’m still not 100%.  It just boggles my mind that I’ve been asthma symptom-free since 2001, but now it’s suddenly taking over my life for no apparent reason.  And it scares the bejeezus out of me.

Being the stubborn broad that I am, though, I couldn’t keep my mind off the elliptical all afternoon at work.  Which is weird, because I usually haaaate the elliptical.  I mean, it’s all fine and good, but usually I want to work out as intensely as I can, and the elliptical doesn’t really do that for me.  But today, it sounded perfect—light cardio that won’t tax my lungs too much but will get the blood flowing to my sore muscles.  So, I went to the gym and, well, did the elliptical for 40 minutes.  I forgot my headphones, though, which sucked, so I read Time magazine instead.  Awesome.

In other exciting news, today, my business cards came in.  The cards themselves are boring, but look!  I got this as a graduation gift from one of my bridesmaids and I’m so excited to use it.  I am not really a blinged-out type of girl, so to speak, but I like small flashes of glam here and there.

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Someone sue me.  It has my married monogram on it and I’m not married yet.  Oops.

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Anyway, what’s your go-to post-race recovery workout?  I love the elliptical for not taxing myself too much but still getting the blood flowing.

Day two

Hi, everyone!

Thanks for sticking with me and all this non-fitness and wedding related nonsense through this transition.  By the end of the week, I plan to be all set up nice and cozy in my new routine, and back in action in the gym.

This morning started out much better—we woke up to a sleepy dog on the bed, not one soiling our carpet!  Hooray for Milhouse.  I also went to bed early and read for awhile last night before going to sleep.  (Sidenote:  I’m re-reading one of my most favorite books ever, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith, and if you haven’t read it we can’t really be friends.  It just has the most luxurious prose, something I don’t tend to find in more modern novels.  This is why I tend to re-read the same things over and over again.   Anyway.)

I started the day out with my usual combo and headed out the door.  First order of business?  Cleaning and decorating my office, of course.  I can’t work in a space that isn’t neat and efficient and somewhat visually appealing.  I actually found an old fingernail in my drawer, which was gross and made me glad I’d brought a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser with me.  It’s not all ready to go, but it’s a definite improvement!  I love my new coffee mug:

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And I put up some pictures of my family:

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I also ordered a fancy diploma frame for my law degree to match my bachelor’s.  I have to say, I feel pretty important at the thought of being flanked by TWO diplomas.  (Still, not worth the piles of student loan debt.  Here’s hoping someday it will be.)  Oh, and last night I purchased a reed diffuser of fragrance so now my office smells like apples.  The good?  It doesn’t smell like ramen noodles any more.  The bad?  Now I’m hungry.

Anyway, around noon I ate my packed lunch from yesterday, which quickly went from this:

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To this (please note adorable desktop wallpaper):

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I love this job largely because, aside from the nice co-workers and interesting work, there is a ginormous ice machine.  I have had so much water today because I like it icy. I’m going to be one hydrated employee, that’s for sure.  I polished off three 16 ounce bottles today!

Exciting news of the day—I think tomorrow I’m going to investigate a nearby gym that I could join for $20 a month.  Like, I saw it from the parking lot of work nearby.  My current dilemma is that I live 30 minutes north of where I work, and my gym is even 10-15 minutes north of that.  So, to go to the gym after work, I’d have to drive past home and back which is a pain.  I would love to be able to keep a packed gym bag in my office, head over at 5 p.m. sharp to work out, MISS THE TRAFFIC ON THE DRIVE HOME (!!!) and be done.  I’m going to wear more comfortable shoes and check it out on my lunch hour tomorrow.  I really hope this works out–it would be the perfect solution for me.

I just don’t think I’ll ever be a morning worker-outer.  I am a big old chicken and running in the dark freaks me out.  I think wearing a concealed weapon might help, but that would probably be heavy and chafe, so no.

Oh, and I also found a minute to post an Operation Beautiful note in honor of Fat Talk Free Week:

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(I checked back an hour later and it was gone!  I hope in a good way.)

I survived!

My first day at work, that is.

Things began less than ideally when Milhouse had to go out at 1 a.m….and then peed on the carpet anyway around 4.  I didn’t get much sleep–3 or 4 hours, max.  (Sidenote: blog reader housebreaking tips welcome.)

I got up bright and early anyway and showered and got ready to go in.  My breakfast was my standard no fail Kashi cereal, milk, and protein powder.  I made T take a “first day of school” picture before I left:

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I went to a HR orientation thingy all morning, which was boring, but right around 11:30 I got to go to my department.  My supervisor was very happy to see me!  She immediately showed me my office and we hit the ground running with a tour (and about a million handshakes…hope I don’t get swine flu).

Then, so much for my packed lunch–a few of my co-workers and my new boss took me out to Cheesecake Factory for lunch!  Yum.  I had the lunch portion of Chicken Romano and ate all the chicken but only about half the pasta.  Mmm.

The rest of the afternoon was basically spent getting up to speed on things.  I have a long way to go, but I’m confident I’ll be fine!  Tomorrow will be spent doing a long list of tasks my boss left me, and also cleaning and decorating my office a bit.  It’s big, but a little depressing!  I need to put my stamp on things.

Here’s what it looks like now.  Hopefully it will be better tomorrow–I’ll post some after pictures!

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I just hit up Target, TJ Maxx, and Bed, Bath, and Beyond for some essentials: a candy jar (and Werther’s Originals and peppermints to fill it with), frames for pictures of T and the pets, some organizational-type things, and a fragrance diffuser.

Anyway, I’m wiped–hopefully I’ll get some good sleep tonight!

The hills are alive…

Today I tackled my friendly neighborhood hills again.  I went into it with a strategy this time–I read on Runner’s World that instead of trying to keep your pace steady when running up hills, you should focus on keeping your level of exertion the same instead.  On the mean hills, then, I watched my heart rate and focused on keeping it as steady as possible instead of racing up it.  At times, yes, this meant I powerwalked up them a bit.  I found this to be a generally good strategy, and I will keep using it.

Overall report for the day–4.1 miles of hills in 44 minutes, burned 650 calories.  I saw nine horses (all very pretty), two items of roadkill, a crap ton of dog poop, and a nice farmer that waved at me.  Also, I tried out my new running shirt from Target!  Here is my bad ass “I’m wearing a new running shirt, beeyotch” pose in the bathroom:

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Should you be inclined to buy one for yourself, you can do so here.

I am generally not a fan of having sleeves and high necks when I work out.  They bother me.  This shirt gets a mixed review–I think I would like it better with a V-neck, but the shirt was very well-ventilated and the sleeves didn’t bother me at all.  Towards the end of the run I was tugging at the neck because I felt a little strangulated, but I’m weird like that (I can’t even wear a t-shirt to the gym).  I think the average bear would like it, and I am going to try to stretch out the neck a bit before I wear it again.
I also went with watered down Gatorade on this run and I have to say, it got the thumbs down this time.  I just kept craving water the whole time, so I’m gonna take that as a sign that I should be drinking water.  It also made me spit a lot, which is just gross.

Weight update:  I don’t stress about the scale, but I appear to have lost a pound or two lately, which is nice.  I don’t really go by the scale, but I feel really happy that my size 8 jeans from last year still fit me, and well.

Life update:  I got a job!  I am not sure on the details of when I’ll be starting yet, but it will be either next Tuesday or the following Monday.  I’ll be working in law school admissions, so the position will use my law degree but I won’t be a lawyer per se, which is exactly what I wanted.  I am so relieved and thrilled and excited for the new opportunity.  Obviously, I’m going to have to re-work my workout schedule and whatnot, but stick with me!