When I was unemployed my daily meals were pretty repetitive: eggs or cereal for breakfast, re-heated soup for lunch, and fish or chicken with vegetables for dinner. But now… I’m a working girl! Now my typical day of meals is pretty different, but the new variety is actually a healthier diet!
(Warning: I’m about to be incredibly vague about my job. I’d rather err on the side of caution, so I’m not going to mention any specifics. Just imagine those workplaces they show in the movies–walls of windows overlooking skyscrapers and the bay, open cubicles, double monitors on every desk, a community kitchen with its very own water cooler for office gossip, glass walls, etc. That’s exactly what my office looks like in real life!)
Breakfast: I eat at the office. I keep instant oatmeal packets and granola in my very own drawer in the kitchen, and usually I bring greek yogurt with me in the morning to mix in some granola. Granola is my new best friend–I mix it into the instant oatmeal too. I like something crunchy in the morning, and it makes yogurt or instant oatmeal seem more substantial.
Breakfast was one of my worst habits when I worked in public education–I had to be on the road by 6:15 am, and I almost never got it together in time to eat breakfast. The few times I tried to eat at school, I always got distracted and couldn’t finish anything. I was always starving by lunch time, and sometimes I was lightheaded by mid morning. What a difference, compared to this job! Now I turn on the computer and fix something in the kitchen, eating at my leisure while I check email and get the day started. It’s awesome!
Lunch: I eat a salad almost every day. There’s an awesome restaurant right outside the office, literally the closet and healthiest option for a quick lunch.
It’s a huge salad bar, including hot sides and sandwiches to order, and you pay by weight. So now I have a personal competition going–how much salad can I get for how little?
My record is $4.37, but I usually average $5-$6. Pretty good for a filling and healthy meal!
But sometimes… I get a craving for some chili from Boudin.
Soup (in a bread bowl) and salad = two lunches
Snack: I drink water all day long. More than I ever have before, which is great. (Another bonus, though most people take it for granted–I can go to the bathroom whenever I want! With Crohn’s disease, that’s a necessity, but not a luxury I had working in a school when you’re always responsible for other lives.) I keep a bag of pretzels in a drawer if I get snacky during the afternoon, and I usually eat some clementines or other fruit when I get home from work each day to tide me over until dinner.
Dinner: Dinner is the wild card, when I’m mostly likely to make an unhealthy choice. I feel like I eat pretty well during the day, so it’s ok to splurge a few nights per week. So although we’re eating out more now that I’m working, I still manage to eat in a few nights per week by relying on leftovers in the freezer. I make batches of soup on the weekends, so I always have some to heat up for a quick dinner. I usually add additional frozen vegetables to whatever soup I have on hand–peas, broccoli, or carrots– and toast some bread to go along with it. Sometimes I will make or re-heat rice and vegetables and sprinkle some cheese on top.
Now that the weather is warmer, I like snacky dinners–cheese, crackers, and fruit are all I need!
If all else fails, eggs are always an option–I love breakfast for dinner!
So that’s a typical day of meals for this working girl. I’m trying to stay on track health-wise and make healthy choices.
(I’d like to note that I’m not trying to imply that I had terrible working conditions while I was in the public school system. I could have made healthier choices while I was working there, but given my health concerns, it is much easier for me in an environment where I’m responsible for my own self. Ok, disclaimer over.)
What are you eating right now?