More Work, Less…What?

It feels good to be back with a “real” post! Since this past Monday evening when I had a mini-breakdown while on the phone with my mom, I have been wanting to address a topic that has been weighing on my mind since the start of November. For those who do not know, I work in the wine industry, for a Boston-based wine negociant called 90+ Cellars. Starting 11/1 (and even before that), the holiday season is really in full swing. I have been planning for Thanksgiving since September but now it’s REALLY here and things at work have been really busy. Still loving the job, no worries, but I’m working more than full-time in the office (plus events in the evenings and weekends). I also have been finding myself staying late and doing work-related tasks over the weekends. This results in spending more time at work.

Weekend work-life.

Time is a finite resource. More time at work means less time spent on other stuff. Like what? Well, I like to go out with my friends some weeknights and on weekends. There are some non-work-related events that still peak my interest. I run errands, I do chores. I’m (trying) to keep up with pleasure reading. And oh yeah, that other little thing that I certainly spend much of my finite time thinking about…the gym.

Some days I have an event or plans with friends in the evening, so I work out in the morning. I know that so many people tout the benefits of 5AM workout club but I cannot stand working out in the morning. When I do so, I keep it shorter and/or less intense than a post-work workout. And when I have lots of events or plans with friends after work, these shorter/less intense workouts really add up in my mind. Other times, I don’t have events after work but just get out and am so EXHAUSTED. I have skipped the gym after work for no reason other than being tired, about three times since moving to Boston. That is something I had NEVER let myself do back in Connecticut. And on weekends, even if I have time for an hour-long workout, I’ve found myself leaving the gym after 30-45 minutes just because I’m sick of being there.

To me, the reasons I do shorter/less intense workouts (or skip the gym altogether) are just excuses. Tired? Plenty of people work out HARD on less than 8 hours of sleep. No time? Well make less plans with friends, and spend more of that time at the gym. In my mind, I should prioritize the gym directly underneath work – and put relaxation and fun after that.

Beer-ing at the Bruins game, after spending just 20 minutes at the gym that morning. I hate how I look in this photo, but I posted it anyway to try to fight that voice in my head.

After conversations with my therapist and my mom, I’ve gotten advice to allow myself to relax. To believe that “I deserve”. To realize that I do enough. But it’s hard to favor the voices of others over the voice in my head, when I have bigger pants (more on that some other time) and weight gain staring me in the face.

I’m not exactly sure how to end this post. I just want to share where I’m at right now, and the internal battles I’ve been fighting. Don’t worry, I still took a rest day this past Friday despite having done “only” twenty minutes of weights/abs the day before.

Drinks on a rest day, with visiting blend Lindsay!

Do you ever struggle with what to cut out when you have to spend more time on something else?

Do you have a hard time defining what is an “excuse” and what is “legit”?

drybar at Chestnut Hill Square

I received discounted blow drys for myself and my friends for review purposes. All opinions are my own and this is not a compensated post.

Real quick – the winners of my Lightlife veggie products giveaway are Katie, Amy, and Amanda! I will be emailing you about claiming your prize!

A couple of weeks ago I decided to attend Thirst Boston‘s opening night gala, The Thing, on Friday 11/7. My friends Jeannie and Allie agreed to join, and we knew we wanted to make it a big night out. That included getting dolled up in black dresses and looking our best. Thankfully, drybar in Chestnut Hill Square was willing to help us out with that part.

11-7-14-drybar6

“The Mind Project” was playing – so appropriate.

I just love drybar’s decor and overall branding! Even the products used during each blow dry have adorable names.

Continue reading

Lightlife Lights Up Meals (Plus Giveaway!)

I received complimentary product coupons for review purposes. I received no monetary compensation for this post and opinions are my own.

Firstly, let me announce the winner of my Redpack Tomatoes giveaway…it’s Annie of Avocado Athlete! Congrats, girl!

annie giveaway

Now I know it seems a bit meh for me to do two product/giveaway posts in a row, but I’m keepin it real: both were due this week, and I do like to give you guys a chance to win products that I actually enjoy. And I seriously enjoyed (and am still enjoying, because there’s some Smart Dogs in my freezer right now waiting to be used) Lightlife veggie products! I have been a fan of cooking with vegetarian “meat” for awhile, and was excited for the chance to try a new brand.

lightlife2

 

Continue reading

Redpack Dinners & Giveaway!

I received complimentary Redpack products in exchange for writing this post. All opinions are my own and I received no monetary compensation.

redpack2

Redpack Tomatoes approached me about not only receiving a slow cooker gift pack, but also giving one away to a reader. I love reviewing products that I get to give to readers too so I was all on board! They sent me a can of Tomato Sauce and two cans of Crushed Tomatoes in Thick Puree. Plus a charming wooden spoon!

photo (4)

 

Continue reading

Five Days Friday

I’ve done the whole using Five Things Friday to talk about my week thing before. But that’s OK as long as I give the post a different title, right? Today I’m breaking down my Monday through Friday – five things, five days!

Link up with Clare if you’re joining the Five Things Friday trend today!

Monday

I was so so so ready on Monday to stay in after my favorite spin class with Danielle Dee at the BSC. But work had other plans, and by the time I got to the gym (ten minutes late), all the bikes were full. It’s getting to be that time of year again! But there are a couple of bikes outside the classroom so I hopped on one of those for thirty minutes and pushed as hard as I could, followed by some abs and my latest round of PT exercises. Oh and another thing – I woke up Monday with a cold coming on. So by the time I got home post-gym – at almost 8PM – I was exhausted and SO glad I had meal prepped the day before!

Continue reading

Trade Em Up Tuesday: Halloween Weekend

I look at Marvelous In My Monday as super positive and Trade Em Up Tuesday as more honest about the good and bad. I certainly did not feel super positive about my Halloween weekend (not due to lack of fun though, that’s for sure) so I decided to wait and participate in Trade Em Up instead. I’m just still really struggling with being okay with the changes in my lifestyle that have happened since I moved to Boston. This was a big weekend for me and I’ve been feeling pretty crappy about it, but also thankful for the fun I had with family and friends.

I would not trade…starting Halloween weekend early with the WeWork Boston Halloween party. OK, so this (free!) event was really awesome. Jeannie has a WeWork office space so she brought me has her guest, and then I found out Emily was going to attend too, so I was looking forward to this party allllll week. I found out last minute it was space-themed so I turned my pre-planned cat costume into a last-minute laser cat costume. (Has anyone seen that SNL skit?!)

Such a last minute costume that I was building my laser cat glasses on the way to the party. Note: crafting on the T makes you look like a crazy person.

Such a last minute costume that I was building my laser cat glasses on the way to the party. Note: crafting on the T makes you look like a crazy person.

Continue reading

A Dare from Dove Hair


Everyone has their “thing” that they spend extra money on. For some it’s running shoes. For others it’s makeup. For me…it’s NOT hair products. I stick with the affordable brands I can find at CVS. So I jumped at the chance to try out the new Pure Care Dry Oil collection from a brand that actually falls within my preferred price point – Dove Hair.

dove1

I received the shampoo, conditioner, and African macadamia oil.

Continue reading

Fitness Friday: Injury Update

I mentioned in Monday’s post that on Tuesday I would be finally headed to an initial assessment with a physical therapist to solve my right IT band “woes”. Thankfully since I go to Harvard Vanguard (big ups to all of you who recommended that as a doctor’s office back when I moved here and asked for recs) it was so easy to get a referral. That place literally has EVERY medical need under one roof, so I just called my PCP and was able to get a referral for their physical therapy services without even being seen first. Hurrah efficiency! AAAAAND Harvard Vanguard is in my insurance network, so PT with them is SO much more affordable than options I’d previously considered.

The first appointment was both informative and reassuring. The therapist said the problem isn’t actually my IT band, but a connecting muscle at my knee that often gets blamed for IT band problems. Now I don’t remember what the name of it is, but the casual name is “runner’s knee”. The PT said it’s a super common problem and we can totally fix it with some exercises that strengthen my hips. He said that I need to get more of that pull and push forward movement in my running that I use when I spin, so that I can propel myself forward that way, which will be easier on my knees.

Continue reading

Bacon, Egg, and Brussels Bowl!

First of all, I want to say thanks so much for the supportive comments and tweets I received in response to Monday’s post. It felt great to write and even greater to get that kind of positive response and reassurance. While I work on trusting myself, encouragement from others really helps me along the way, so I appreciate everyone who took the time to send me well wishes – or even anyone who read!

I’m still trying to keep up with choosing a couple of recipes from my Pinterest boards each week to make for the weeknights I stay in. I usually follow them pretty closely, but the only ingredients in this recipe that I stuck with when I made this dish (on Sunday) were Brussels sprouts (duh) and hard-boiled eggs. I figured eggs went well with (turkey) bacon…and then bacon reminded me of BLT’s so I decided to throw in tomatoes. Plus I had some kale on hand, and I figured throwing that in there wouldn’t hurt!

brussels-egg-bacon-kale-tomato

In the mixing bowl!

Don’t let the title of this easy recipe deceive you – there’s a few other ingredients in there! However the title ingredients were DEFINITELY the stars.

Continue reading

Ch-Ch-Changes

Usually reflecting on how you and your life have changed is something that’s reserved for special occasions, like a birthday or the start of a new year. But I’ve been feeling pretty reflective lately. I’ve spent the last few weekend mornings waking up and laying in bed for awhile, thinking (often OVER thinking). I’ve been noticing how different my life is now than it was a year ago, and am having a hard time digesting, accepting, and being OK with it. I can’t even figure out if I SHOULD be accepting or OK with it. Maybe these changes need to be changed. Maybe not. My mind certainly spends enough time telling me they need to be.

For example…going out. I love going out. Since moving to Boston there has barely been a Friday or Saturday that I stayed in. I did start going out more back when I was still living in CT, but now I stay out later and have more beverages because I don’t have to drive, and the city is just so alive. I attribute much of the weight I’ve gained since moving here to my love for going out. Alcohol has calories – a fact I know all too well. I go out more now, I weigh more now. So naturally my mind constantly berates me for how I spend my Fridays and Saturdays. I wake up most Saturday and Sunday mornings with anxiety and terrible body image. I’ve had a few really rough ones lately. I’ve woken up and wanted to do nothing but curl into a ball and lay in bed hating myself all day. Thankfully texts to friends and family have motivated me to get out of bed and go on with my life. The “easy” solution is to just, well, not go out. But…that’s not fun. That’s not what I WANT to do. This whole recovery thing has been about letting myself do what I want to do. But when does that stop being OK?

Continue reading