Category Archives: exercise

Careful What You Wish For… (Working From Home)

I’m very thankful to work remotely for a great company, and there are definite advantages in working from home.  But, it’s just like any relationship.  The advantages can eventually become the disadvantages.

It’s the little things that drive you crazy… like the fact that you can’t control when people mow their lawn, or when a loud truck drives by your house.  It can be disastrous if someone knocks when you are on the phone, so my dogs go in a closed room faaaar from the desk and a sign goes on the door when I have important conference calls.

Working over telephones, it’s hard to tell when the speaker is finished or someone new is going to pipe up, so there is the frequent unintended interruption of your colleagues.  You also have to work a little harder at interpreting meaning since you can’t see facial expressions.

You learn to not have overnight guests during the week since most people don’t really get what it means to ‘work from home’.  They bang kitchen cabinets, get ice from the dispenser, and walk into the room talking all the while risking your professionalism.  They don’t mean to cause trouble; they just haven’t experienced working for a paycheck from home.

The obvious differences are not having to dress professionally and the lack of office socialization.  Working in an office brought some of the best relationships I’ll ever have.  My girlfriends from work have shared many tear-producing laughing spells and gotten me through many crises.  I miss them.  I have to try a little harder to get my regular dose of friends.

It is true that I don’t spend as much money on clothes, shoes, and jewelry as I did when I worked in an office.  The result is that now I never have the right clothes to wear, anywhere.  You see, I hate to shop.  Needing to shop for work clothes got me in the stores, and then I bought all kinds of clothes and shoes.  Now, I just keep putting it off and will eventually be that oddly-dressed lady who generates chuckles.

Wearing comfortable clothes while working brought its own harsh reality when I put on ‘real’ clothes a few weeks after starting the remote job.  It’s harder to notice that you are gaining weight.  I couldn’t believe it until I started realizing that I didn’t walk from the parking garage to the office anymore, from my desk to lunch, to meeting rooms, to the kitchen,…

It’ is great to avoid commuting in rush hour.  But that evening-hour commute gave me opportunities to stop by the grocery store or the drug store.  Now, it seems I’m perpetually out of the basics.  In the old days, I would not venture out of the house without makeup applied and hair done at least a little.  I no longer consider it worth the time to ‘get ready’ just to run to the store.  So, I tend to put off going altogether or pretend I’m invisible and run into the store looking like an embarrassment to my younger self.

In the end, the biggest difference is freedom in where you live.  I’m thankful to the now-friend who offered the original position to me.  It allowed me to move back to the southeast.  Now, I can have a casual weekend dinner with my Mother and Grandmother, and that’s the best advantage.  Now, if I can just figure out what to wear…….



Cher got me out of bed again this morning

Alright so you and I both know it’s important to exercise regularly (boosts mood, improves sex life, etc.)… you are likely as bombarded with this message every day as I am. That said, I am an absolute believer and more importantly, I have to confess that I’m addicted.

I work out on average 5.5 days a week… some weeks 6 days, some weeks 5 days. While my obsession hasn’t yet propelled me to everyday workouts, I have been known to try to pull off as many doubles (two exercise sessions per day) as I can per week (when work was slower).

On top of all of that, I’m a morning person… that is right, usually really early morning. (Luckily, apparently morning people hold all the “important cards” when it comes to business success). But regardless, I can’t help it.

I love the morning, the quiet, the calm, the coffee, the productivity… I could go on and on, but I’m sure all you night people are just about ready to click away from this blog.

So let’s get back to exercise… even being a morning person, that isn’t to say that I don’t suffer from motivational issues from day to day. You look at any exercise mag cover and you’ll see loads of articles on how to motivate your lazy bones to get moving

The reality is, it is hard.. really really hard. The pillow pulls you down, the warmth of the blankets and the cool air feel soooo good. What is a person to do?

Channel Cher. That’s right… channel Cher.

I read an interview with her years and years ago… so many years that I can’t find it on the web anyway (likely 15-20 years so pre-web.. yikes!). An intrepid interviewer was asking her how she stayed motivated to keep such a rockin body… and she said something to the effect of:

I make a promise that if I start, I can quit after 10 minutes

The genius of it! The point is that any morning I am struggling with it, I get to the place where I channel Cher and promise that I’ll just start my workout and if within 10 minutes, I can’t do it anymore or want to go back to bed, I can. After all these years, I haven’t ever quit after 10 minutes.

It is cher sheer genius!

And I’ll tell you what… it routinely gets my butt out of bed in between 4 and 5am to get through a workout in time to get to work and bust my hump. You may be reading this asking why I don’t just exercise in the PM. Tried it.. just can’t make it work for me. I’ve come to learn it is because of decision fatigue (fascinating article on this), but by the end of any regular day, I’ve made too many decisions to make the somewhat challenging one of getting my lazy bones through a workout.

So there you have it… all you need is a little Cher and you’ll be rockin your workouts. Seriously, get your Cher on!

– Michaela


Update: check out this article that advises getting in the game and early morning workouts! yeah!!