Eats and exercise, working-from-home style

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As I mentioned last week, for the last five weeks I’ve been working from home. I have to admit I was slightly nervous about the transition, from a professional perspective. Would I be productive? Would I go crazy without face-to-face interaction? But thankfully, I have such good working relationships with all my colleagues, I really haven’t missed a single beat. I have calls that break up the day and pockets of time during which I need to finish projects, so the days have managed themselves. I’m even headed to Boston in mid-July for a few days to see my colleagues!

The improvement in our lifestyle since moving back to Indianapolis is absolutely astonishing. No more 14-hour days. Plenty of sleep every night. Full evenings spent together. I feel such a weight lifted from my shoulders. Work can still be stressful at times (like any job), but with enough sleep and a better balance everything feels manageable.

From an eating perspective, I knew I would love working from home. I’m a big advocate of “You Can’t Eat It If It’s Not There,” so the ability to completely control my food intake really appealed to me. Anyone who works in an office knows the constant stream of food can get overwhelming. I actually advocate for a “food-neutral” workplace policy, wherein people aren’t allowed to bring large amounts of unhealthy food into the workplace. If I don’t want to be taunted by baked goods on the counter, I shouldn’t have to be. Some might say that’s going too far, but certain food is addictive and (for some people) requires strict boundaries.

What I’ve Been Eating

I’ve been eating TONS of overnight oats for breakfast. I combine raw oats, chia seeds, almond milk and cinnamon in a bowl and let it sit in the fridge overnight. The oats soak up the liquid and form a delicious, doughy, gooey mixture. I top it with a sprinkle of granola and almonds in the morning to add some crunch. It literally keeps me full for hours.

For lunch, I’ve been enjoying spinach/strawberry/almond salads and protein-packed smoothies. I go out to lunch with my mom or friends a couple times a week to break up my days, and I’ve been making pretty healthy choices.

I’m so happy to say I’ve been making dinner at least four nights a week. We relied much too heavily on eating out in Boston, and it’s just so much easier to control the nutritional content of meals when you’re preparing them yourself.

Gluten Update

One thing I’ve noticed is gluten doesn’t seem to be bothering me at all. A few months back,  I really thought I was developing a gluten insensitivity after experiencing several weeks of IBS-like symptoms. I’ve been eating moderate amounts of gluten the past few weeks and I feel absolutely fantastic. I’ve been staying away from processed foods, eating lots of fiber, watching my alcohol intake and getting lots of exercise, but I eat gluten basically every day and haven’t experienced any of the symptoms I discussed awhile back. I’m starting to think I mistook stress for a gluten issue. Now that my lifestyle is under control, the symptoms have disappeared.

Personal Training

I decided to hire a personal trainer! With the wedding in less than four months, it’s now or never to drop some pounds and tone up. I want to know I’ve done everything I possibly can to get in optimal shape. Also, from personal experience I know that spending money on something keeps me accountable. If I don’t show up for my ass kicking appointment, I’m out $30. Money talks, baby.

I also realized personal training will be a great way to familiarize myself with lots of great strength training exercises. Strength has been lacking from my routine, and its benefits are seriously alluring. For every pound of muscle you build, your body burns 50 more calories. I like that math! People who weight train generally have a much easier time maintaining fat loss because their bodies are burning more calories than those who’ve lost weight through diet alone.

I also have to credit one of my favorite bloggers, Emily Malone from Daily Garnish, for giving me the inspiration to take weight training seriously. Check out her post on the results she saw from weight training if you want a huge dose of motivation!

Well, the rest of my work day beckons! Later, friends!

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4 responses »

  1. Laur, I’ve heard tons about overnight oats, and I’d love to try them. Can you give me a more concrete recipe? Love you!

  2. Rach and Kevin, you should totally try overnight oats! My basic recipe is this: In a regular cereal bowl, combine 1/2 cup raw rolled oats (not quick oats), 3/4 cup of almond (or regular) milk, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon and 2 teaspoons of chia seeds. If you’ve never tried chia seeds, you can find them at a health food store like Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s. They’re high in protein, fiber and omega 3’s and they add a nice nutty flavor and texture. Just mix it all together and let it sit in the fridge overnight. In the morning, the oats will have absorbed all the moisture, and the chia seeds puff up to a texture similar to tapioca pearls. I just give it a quick stir, then top with almonds, berry and a little granola. I think the granola is important because it adds both crunch and sweetness.

    I’ll do a post with pictures soon, but in the meantime check out Kath Eats for some recipes: http://www.katheats.com/favorite-foods/overnightoats

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