Hi all. I'm so MIA I'm sure no one except Sandi will remember me. I've been through loads in the last year or so and I'm heavier than ever. I think I am at an all time high with my weight other than when I was pregnant with my now 2 year old daughter. Right now though I am 3 lbs heavier than I was with my son just before I gave birth. I'm in an office job right now working Monday thru Friday, I'm up and on the road by 7:30am and home by 5pm usually. By the time I get dinner ready, clean up a little or spend some time with the kids and my husband it is time to put them to bed and by then I am wiped out. Right now I am really, really tired but the problem is that I end up waking up around 3 or 4am and then can't get back to sleep. I'm in a fairly newish job with a lot of responsibility and I am not coping with it at all well. The stress is intense. I thought I would love an office job but actually not so much. I just don't feel like I have time for anything and I am so, so tired! I know the weight is part of it, it would definitely help to be 100 lbs lighter, I'm sure I would have more energy. I'm caught in one of these circles of being too tired to have healthy meals but I know I would feel better if I ate better. Argh! Exercise?? What is that? No time, no energy, I am at the worst shape of my life. This is the first time in my life I've had a monday to friday job and I am so not coping. Previously I've had shift jobs usually where I worked 12 hour shifts and so worked less days so I had more days to get things done. Now I have only the weekend to squeeze in so much stuff that I am overwhelmed. How does anyone manage it??
08-26-2010, 12:11 AM
This is going to sound critical and harsh, but it isn't meant to be. Lots of people have very stressful and time consuming jobs but make time for themselves and their health. When something is important to you, you make time for it.
You can pre-plan your meals and make things in bulk. You can make your own healthy TV dinners that you just have to throw in the oven to heat up. You can go out for a walk at lunch break, etc., etc.
When you want something badly enough, you find a way. You can do this! :)
08-26-2010, 12:19 AM
I agree with Matt. If you put yourself as a priority I bet you'll find a way to do what you need to do :) The crockpot is my best friend btw!
08-26-2010, 12:56 AM
I agree totally with the two above (& very successful) posters. And I do remember you...
Not to sound insensitive, but if you think about - not having the time to be your healthiest, to be your optimal, to eat well and take care of yourself (the mom of your children) - sounds kinda - silly. The better you take care of yourself, the more time you put into it, you will be rewarded with more energy, stamina, productivity and joy.
When things matter, when they are vital - we FIND the time, some how, some way.
But of course it DOES have to be a top priority. You have to realize that it needs to be a TOP PRIORITY. It has to be important enough to you to MAKE the time.
Pre-planning is ESSENTIAL for me.
In the beginning it may seem a bit daunting and overwhelming, but eventually, when you get it down pat, you will do it by rote. It will become natural and automatic to you - simple.
Raise your standards. Require more from yourself. Push yourself. You'll never know what you're capable of unless you give it 150% and push yourself to get there. You have the ability to do this. You are capable of it. Discover who you were meant to be. :)
08-26-2010, 01:11 AM
Planning, planning , planning. I think it could not only be healthier but less stress too. There are tons of healthy crock pot recipes. There are easy ways to cook ahead on the weekends and store or freeze.
Could you not use your lunch break to take a walk a few days a week? If you make this important to you you will succeed.
08-26-2010, 01:43 AM
Hi Jen and welcome back. Hopefully the new job won't be as stressful once you settle in and get used to the routine.
I'm sometimes up at 3:30 or 4:00 a.m. myself unable to get back to sleep so I understand how frustrating this can be. I decided that I may as well make good use of the time so I generally get my exercise in at 5:00 a.m. I don't have to worry about being too tired at the end of my day and trying to fit it in and it sort of sets the tone for the whole day. It might work for you as well.
As for food, if your budget allows maybe try buying your fruits and veggies pre-washed and cut to save yourself some time. A rotisserie chicken or turkey breast might also save you some time at the end of the day when you're too tired to cook.
08-26-2010, 01:55 AM
I just blogged about this yesterday! I have a very busy schedule at work and home and it is all about the 5 P's for me: proper planning prevents poor performance!
I really think you have to be committed to like the others said making your health your top priority. I know its easier to make excuses of im busy etc than it is to spend 4 hours on Sunday cooking for the whole week, but the end result is truly a reward. I have lost 50lbs preparing ahead of time and not making excuses anymore :) you can too!
08-26-2010, 02:19 AM
Yup. When you realize you are what really matters, you're main focus will be YOU.NL No excuses, you'll get like nike && just do it. Haha I know I wanted it sooooo bad && now Im doing my training to finish losing whats left plus gain pure muscle. I've changed soooo much. You can do it hun.
08-26-2010, 02:40 AM
Wow. Sounds like you're having a tough time. Sometimes it's hard to see the forest for the trees, but you can make it work, and get healthy too.
Lots of good ideas here-- Matt, Tai and Nikkis6kidsmom have easy ones to try. If you don't go back to sleep in 10 minutes when you wake up to early, get up and prepare for your day. Exercise, fix dinner (crockpot is good idea), take "me" time.
Automate or use mail to pay bills. Then, at work: TAKE YOUR BREAKS. Short walk at lunch. Maybe do a task that needs to be done, so Saturday will not be so crowded. Also, look around at work for folks that walk at break or lunch, thats a good stress reliever as well as healthy.
If you remain overwhelmed, re-evaluate. I went from Shift work to the 8-5 world, and had to learn to do it, it is really a different lifestyle. It gets easier and more profitable when your kids are in school.
You can make it. Good luck.
08-26-2010, 03:03 AM
Take this one step at a time. What can you do today? The weekend is coming up, could you spend some time making a weeks worth of menu's? Then get the shopping done for the week or could the DH do the shopping for you?
Once you get meal planning down, then start working on another good habit. Yes, if you're already up hours before you have to be in at work then exercise. Or prepare meals ahead of time.
Seriously, start. Start anywhere doing something, anything at all and then build on that.
I'm a big one for planning. If I don't plan for it, be it the food I put in my mouth or exercise, it doesn't get done. That's just human nature. But, you can stop beating yourself up and start planning to succeed.
You can do this. You can do this. Just start. Today.
08-26-2010, 03:29 AM
I feel for you. Being a mom and having a family with small children and then working is no easy task. Most of us put ourselves last.
You didn`say how old you are but during my 30`s and 40`s I was also an insomniac - up in the middle of the night and I`m sure that is adding to your stress level. It`s obvious that ANYTHING seems difficult when we are foggy and so tired from lack of sleep. Add to that the stress of the job and the family and it`s understandable why you are feeling overwhelmed.
I think you need to maybe sit down this weekend (LOL even if you have to lock yourself into the bathroom for some time for yourself!) and try to organize how to make getting through meal time easier, healthier and more slimming.
What can you do that is fast for breakfast? A quick egg white omlet? A quick instant oatmeal or Special K or perhaps a protein drink?
I would pack a ton of fruit to snack on at lunch. And then meats and veggies for lunch and dinner. Really these don`t require too much planning. Have your husband grill the meats and then all you have to do are the veggies and maybe a startch for the family.
Tell your husband you need some help.
Have you ever done the Atkins diet? I`m not a big proponent of it at the moment (because my cholesterol is on the moon) but years ago I lost a a great deal of weight on it and most of all, for your case, I had a tremendous amount of energy.
Carbs tend to bloat me and make me tired which sounds like it`s the last thing you need at the moment.
Which diet do you prefer or have had success with in the past?
Wishing you sleep and a more relaxed day today!
08-26-2010, 07:18 AM
Here is an analogy:
I have a friend who is in a pretty bad situation, debt-wise. One of the things that is making it hard for her to pull herself out of it is that she spends a LOT of money on her 4 year old daughter--lessons, and trips to the zoo, and birthday parties. Not crazy stuff, but the stuff that normal, middle class kids do. In her mind, this is a non-negotiable, because it's not for her, it's for her daughter. But the fact is, her daughter needs parents with a firm financial foundation and the savings to help her in an emergency way more than she needs a bike, or swimming lessons.
It's the same for you. Your kids needs a healthy mom who will be alive at their high school graduation way more than they need a clean house today, or 30 extra minutes a night with you right now. Find some things you can give up or cut out of your life to make time for your health.
08-26-2010, 07:34 AM
I can't agree more with what everyone else has said. I used to feel guilty about making myself a priority, but then I realized that if I want to be able to take care of my family then I've GOT to take care of myself too. They need a healthy wife and Mom. Make YOURSELF a priority and you'll get done what needs to be done. :)
08-26-2010, 09:54 AM
I read your post with some fear because I am just about to embark on the same change-- I've been working shift work for a "day job" and I'm a writer who works at home during the week-- tons of flexibility. I'm already wondering how well I'll cope with not having days off. It's definitely going to be different.
I do have a suggestion. For years "no time" or "no child care" was my excuse not to exercise, but when I finally committed to it, I picked a time when there was never a conflict: nine o'clock pm.... I definitely thought it was horribly hard and counter-intuitive at first. I was always exhausted at the end of the day and I had to FORCE myself to go-- but every single time I ended up invigorated instead of tired... now I can get up at 5 drive over an hour, work a busy 12 hour shift, drive an hour home, get home at 9 or 9:30 pm and hop on the treadmill and run. Who???? ME??????
You might be more of a morning person and you may prefer to get up early-- or maybe taking a walk at lunch is your best bet. But if you pick a time and stick to it like glue even if you're tired, pretty soon you will find yourself looking forward to it.
08-26-2010, 10:23 AM
Weirdly enough, I worked M-F "office hours" for years, and for the last few I have been working 12 hour shifts with the days off. To be honest, it has taken me a long time to get my groove THIS way. I find that it's much easier to automate my food choices when I'm at work, so all these extra days off wreaked havoc for awhile. Bottom line is, as everyone else is saying, you just need to find your stride. It will take some time, but you will get used to it and figure out ways to work your PRIORITIES into your schedule. It will happen if you really want it to! ;)
08-26-2010, 10:30 AM
I feel your pain. I commute to work four days a week (get to work from home one day) and the commute itself eats an hour and a half out of my day, then working 40 hours a week. Picking my son up from daycare, feeding him, bathing him, squeezing and kissing him, reading him a story, feeding and bathing myself, dishes, laundry, some relaxing time with hubby... and the list goes on. It never ends. It REALLY never ends.
You have to prioritize. What is MOST important to you? What can you do away with? We often use paper plates. I just paid my cousin $20 to help me clena my house. Like PP, I often use my crock pot and plan my meals ahead of time. Clean dishes and clean clothes are important to me... the rest of the chores can wait.
Everyone above me all said it so well. Lots of great tips! I especially agree with Shmead about needing to be healthy for your kids. My hubby often gets bonding time with our son while I go for runs. I have to be healthy so I can keep up with him... and so that someday, I can also think about a sibling for him!
Oh - also - Healthy Choice Cafe Steamers and Green Giant frozen veggies that you just pop in the microwave have been my lifeline for quite a while!
08-26-2010, 11:03 AM
I'll chime in here, too. Right now I'm getting up at 4:30 to pack my lunch and get to the gym before getting to work before 8:00. At lunch, I walk 2 miles with my friend and then we eat fast and get back to work. I have to plan meals or I would be eating whatever is easiest. I have two very active, non-driving teenagers who always have somewhere to be.
I will say that some weeks it has been exhausting. But when I don't make it to the gym, or do the walking, I feel even worse.
You can do it!! And, I remember you too. Welcome back!
08-26-2010, 06:02 PM
Hi Jen!! :hug: Welcome back! I had wondered what had happened to you.
You have gotten some good advice. I know it seems impossible, but you can do this. So, tell me what's 1 good thing that you can start despite your schedule. Can you start taking your lunch every day? Can you eat a healthy breakfast? Can you count your calories? I used to think I had to be perfect and now I realize that what I really need is to be consistent. So what's 1 healthy thing that you can add right now and try to stick to it!
08-27-2010, 04:12 AM
Thanks everyone so much for the great advice. It has been a very rough year for me. My mom passed away and my husband has been dealing with a lot of stuff emotionaly and pshysically and has been off work for almost a year. He can't cope with the kids so they go to daycare which eats a huge chunk out of our money. He gets insurance benefits but not much so we rely on my salary mostly otherwise I'd go back to my other job in a second. I was coping a lot better when I wasn't working monday to friday. I feel so overwhelmed on so many fronts, work, home, money, family and my weight. There are so many things I need to do, I can't even begin to prioritize them. I've got to get a handle on things because my weight is spiralling up and out of control. I've started with a few small changes, giving up my morning coffee and bagel and having fruit instead for example. I'm going to try and get outside for a quick walk during work, that's a good idea, 30 minutes away from my desk isn't going to bring the place to a standstill!
08-27-2010, 07:25 AM
Jen, I remember you, too. Welcome back! It sounds like you've been facing some real challenges right now, with work and family. I'm sorry to hear about your mom... that is always stressful, often in ways you couldn't anticipate.
I'm glad you've started with a few small changes. I know that when I begin feeling overwhelmed, I don't feel like I can make wholesale changes, but one or two "successes" really change the situation for the better and make me realize that I CAN do this.
And you don't have to make the best the enemy of better... you don't have to be perfect... just do a little bit at a time if that's what works for you right now.
EVERY step you make toward a healthier life will have impact in the long-term.