I’m nine months away from embarking on the greatest challenge of my life: marriage. But an almost equaling daunting task awaits me in those months leading up to it: preparing for a wedding.
Now, I should tell you, I’m not one of “those girls.” You know, the ones that had their dress picked out, color scheme decided and fairytale predicted by the age 10. No, for me a wedding is a by-product of getting married; it’s something I’m excited about, sometimes stressed but not something I eat, breathe and sleep. While I could care less about centerpieces, floral arrangements and seating charts, one thing I care deeply about is the way I will look.
I’ve never really had any motivation before to stick to a strict exercise/nutrition. I’m not fat, or even chunky; I’ve been told on more than one occasion that I look like I’ve lost weight recently (stress). While I don’t need to “lose weight” to prepare for The Big Day, I would like to shed some of this abdominal baby weight that has stuck with me for 27 (almost 28 – yikes!) years.
So, how to do that. Well, avoiding temptation is my #1 priority and biggest obstacle. I’m a journalist by profession, arguably one of the unhealthiest, highest-stress jobs, not to mention underpaid. For those Seinfeld fans, you may recall the episode where Elaine is constantly dodging office parties….it seems like everyday her co-workers find another reason to celebrate with high-sugar staples. Yeah, that’s MY office. It seems like everyday a co-worker of mine has brought in cake or other sweets for all the office to share. It’s out of the goodness of their hearts, of course, but their bleeding heart equals my expanding waist. So, making sure I have plenty of healthy snacks at work is a must.
My lack of structure in terms of my work schedule has also led me to stray from a healthy diet at points. Unfortunately, many nights I work late, like dinner at midnight late. You know what they say about eating and then going to sleep and what it does to you body. Yeah, I can vouch for that. So, trying to find a semblance of an “eating routine” is another to-do.
Finally, it’s no secret that us journalists are not exactly showered with cash. More often than not, if I have to eat on the run, I’ll pick the $2 burger over the $7 salad. It also doesn’t help that I’m frugal (read cheap) by nature. Luckily, I’ve started looking harder for the healthy alternatives around me. A great discovery has been the Harris Teeter salad bar right by my office. It’s about a five-minute walk (and excuse to leave the office) and gives me ample healthy options at my disposal. The best part? I can eat a filling, scrumptious salad for under $3. Today for lunch I enjoyed a spinach salad loaded with peppers, onions, carrots and beans, topped with oil and vinegar, for $1.80. A new, low-price record.
I hope you’ll enjoy my contributions to the LeanGirlsClub over the next few months. I lean on its founder (not to mention my maid of honor) Grace quite often for healthy advice so more often than not her wisdom is the source of my writing. For my next entry I’ll let you in on my exercise regimen, in its infancy, and how I’m doing on sticking to my commitments. Hopefully sticking to this commitment will only make me a better wife in the future.
Follow Kara on Twitter @karajclark