July 27, 2011

Adjusting and Getting a Fresh Start

This week has been flying by! I’m headed back to NYC tonight because I have a company event to attend tomorrow. While I still will be working tomorrow and Friday, my time at the client was cut super short – first because I couldn’t find a flight to get me to the office before lunchtime on Monday, and then because I have to fly out this afternoon. To further exacerbate the problem, my client was at a different location Monday and Tuesday, so I really need to fit a week’s worth of questions/iterations with them into just 8 hours before I head off to the airport. Stressful!

Also stressful is the fact that I recently got promoted (second promotion in a year!). While this was a huge cause for celebration when I learned about the promotion a few weeks ago, it’s now becoming an area for concern. On most of my last few project reviews, I’ve gotten comments like, “Laura needs the opportunity to manager junior resources and lead a project from start to finish. This role did not give her that opportunity – which is not her fault – but she needs to get that.” However, at my new level, I’m expected to have those leadership/management skills… and I just don’t. Where this becomes a huge problem is that for my current role, I’m supposed to lead a team of developers and manage an entire project with limited support from the senior people on the team. I spent Monday and Tuesday stressing out about how I can get up to speed – FAST! – and I’m a bit worried about my ability to deliver. Luckily, my director sat me down yesterday and gave me a high-level rundown of all the steps needed to manage the delivery of our project, so hopefully between that and a lot of just-in-time research on my end, I can do it. Fingers crossed!

On the diet front, I’ve been doing really well with my eating lately – for the last week or so, I just haven’t been as hungry or food-obsessed as I usually am. I was chalking that up to stress and the fact that I’ve been too busy to really think much about food, but then I saw an interesting study on whey protein and weight loss (thanks to Cranky Fitness’ Lazy Linkage feature). The study itself basically concluded that whey protein is linked to lower levels ghrelin, a hormone that increases appetite. Ever since I discovered Chocolate Covered Katie’s recipes for healthy milkshakes, I’ve been making those a lot for breakfast, and I usually throw in a scoop of whey protein when I do so. Is it possible that those yummy milkshake breakfasts are reducing my ghrelin levels and therefore making me less hungry? Yippee – I will keep drinking up!

And finally, in exercise news, I decided it’s time for me to start going to the gym again. When I was doing Insanity, I eschewed the gym in favor of just working out in my hotel room… but now that I’m not doing those crazy workouts every day, it’s time for me to start hitting the hotel gym more often. On Monday night, I headed down and hit the elliptical for 30 minutes, supposedly covering 4.1 miles in that time. (And that, my friends, is evidence of why you should never trust the counters on gym machines – while I was going pretty fast, my heart rate was in the 130s, so there is just no way I was doing a steady 7:19 pace… especially since the elliptical is usually slower than running). Ever since then, my IT bands have been pretty tight (I can’t wait to get home to my foam roller!), and it occurred to me that it’s been a very long time since I hopped on an elliptical. Maybe since January, even, since Rachel Cosgrove’s plan basically forbid cardio in favor of weight lifting? WOW.

Which brings me to another key point: I really need to get back to weight lifting. I don’t think it necessarily helped me to try to follow the Female Body Breakthrough so specifically (and frankly, I enjoy zoning out on cardio sometimes!), but I’ve lost a lot of the strength I had built up then, and that makes me sad. Perhaps next week I’ll pack my book and start up on the workouts – mixed in with a little bit of elliptical, a little bit of running, and a little bit of Insanity. After experimenting with each of those, I’ve come to conclude that a balanced approach is really best, and it’s whatever gets you going that is the best workout. The less you have to think about it and stress about it, the easier it gets.


7 thoughts on “Adjusting and Getting a Fresh Start”

  1. Hope the new position at work goes well. Im sure you’ll get the hang of it.

    Also, I would love it if you added the Name/URL commenting option to your blog. It’s really hard for me to comment without it. (I read regularly though!)

  2. I think that the leadership skills you’ve developed in running count in the work world too. You’ve had to learn how to manage and motivate the folks you are pacing.


    Angela/Pretty in Orange

  3. SUPER interesting about the correlation between whey protein and decreased appetite. Usually I’m pretty food-crazed myself, but i definitely have noticed a change in that. I’ve been drinking smoothies with whey protein after every workout, so maybe that’s the reason! 🙂

  4. Amy – we’ll see if it lasts now that I’m back to traveling and not working from home! I plan to load up this weekend 🙂

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