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Personal entry: An “interesting” time for Almost Fit

Posted Nov 07 2008 1:19am

Ed. note: This entry is a personal post on where I’ve been over the last few weeks. Normally Almost Fit sticks to one central concept: eating real food in moderation. I will be writing more on my main subject in the coming weeks, but I felt that many readers might be interested to know where I’ve been since I haven’t posted in a while. If this doesn’t interest you, it’s totally understandable - feel free to skip the post. But rest assured I’ll be resuming my usual subject matter soon. Thanks for reading.

As the title of this post says, it has been, for lack of a better term, an “interesting” time for me over the last few weeks. I have never gone this long without a post on Almost Fit, but I hope this is the last time that I have to set it aside for a while. I am currently writing this post a couple of hundred miles away from home, waiting to return tomorrow after a week of work at a new job. 

As I mentioned in several posts in mid summer, I left my day job behind in favor of pursuing some business ideas that made a lot of sense to me at the time, and still do in that context. I also really needed some time off with my family, and although it wasn’t as focused as I thought the time would be, we did enjoy a flexible schedule and several local getaways, and equally important I was able to restore some of my own equilibrium after a lot of extended hours and working weekends. We were also able to develop some excellent, frugal habits over the summer, which I really believe will stick over the years to come.

Unfortunately, one major thing changed: the economic slide impacted our family directly, and I’ve had to do a bit of scrambling to figure out our next move. Part of my business plan involved funds that were tied up in the stock market - and as many of us discovered rather abruptly, that wasn’t necessarily my strongest choice. We haven’t lost nearly as much as many folks, but when that money is central to how you are going to pay your mortgage, it does force you to reconfigure a few of your assumptions.

In my case, even before the market fell through, conditions prompted me to start looking for work in my old industry. In September I was feeling clearly the indications that businesses were not spending much money on some of the services that I was developing; and although I of course had no idea how bad it would get on a global scale, I realized that my business was not going to take hold as quickly as I needed it to. 

Without droning on about it, I began looking for work that used my old skill set, and after watching several opportunities literally dry up over night (for example, several promising employers suddenly instituted hiring freezes when the economy crumbled, including one company that was forced to rescind job offers they had made in the days before the crash), I consider myself very lucky to have landed a contract that will get us through the coming months. As a result however, I’ve had to pull my focus from Almost Fit for a few weeks while I figured out the job aspect of life. 

The good news is, tomorrow will complete my first week with this company, and I am enjoying it thoroughly. I actually worked for the company many years ago, but under significantly different personal circumstances. From an Almost Fit perspective, it has been an interesting time because when I worked here before, I was fully engrossed in the typical 20’s male American diet - some low fat choices here and there and the occasional crash diet, but mostly eating pizza and soda whenever I could get it, enjoying the waning benefits of youthful metabolism.

This time, it’s different. I’m a little older now, I’ve developed a taste for eating better quality food, and my metabolism has definitely moved into a molasses-like state for lack of significant and consistent exercise. The danger of course is that given that I’m working 200 miles from home staying in the temporary environment of a hotel room, my eating habits are truly at risk. Not to mention, the familiarity of working here resurrects old food cravings, not unlike I suppose someone who has given up smoking, and then returns to the old bars and restaurants in which they enjoyed the habit at the time.

To head off the urge to return to old fast food haunts that were part of my previous time with this company, at the beginning of the week I went to a local food co-op and picked up fresh fruit, some decent Fair Trade Certified coffee, and assorted “good choices” for the week. Although I must confess that today, out of convenience (and a lack of planning) I made a mistake: I did go to a fast food restaurant, breaking my longest running streak. But true to form, it made me feel physically ill afterward, which was a great wake-up call. I returned to my healthier habits for dinner, eating an organic chicken caesar salad for dinner with an apple for dessert. And although exercise is as usual, lacking, I feel energized again because I’ve made it through a week in an old context with my new habits primarily intact. 

And maybe most importantly, my visit to a fast food joint today stimulated the need to return to my old writing habits here, describing my journey, and finding inspiration in your comments and the articles of my fellow writers.

Fortunately, this contract will allow me to work from home after I get established here, so eating well will doubtless be easier as time passes. And while I have not lost any more weight since my post on momentum, I have not gained much either. I am up a couple of pounds I believe, but nothing that some exercise can’t knock out. 

That is a long way of saying “Sorry I’ve been gone; but I’ve had a good reason.” 

And I’m getting ready to get back to it shortly, including the follow up post on the benefits of a CSA. I haven’t forgotten; I’ve just been a little preoccupied with figuring out how we’re going to keep our house in unanticipated financial times. And fingers crossed, we’ll be fine.

Thanks for reading.

 

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