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Very few people can say that they truly love their job. I am lucky to consider myself one of them. Four years ago, I left my retail job at Sunglass Hut and became a rep for one of my favorite brands: Oakley. My job is to train Sunglass Hut and LensCrafters employees to sell Oakley products. The job affords me the luxury of travel and lots of fun experiences. It also comes with its fair amount of challenges. Some of those challenges involve my waistline, as you may remember from Kristen’s recent article about my weight-loss efforts, but for Fit Bottomed Dudes’ Week, I thought I’d elaborate on those challenges and update you on my progress.
Growing up, I could eat whatever I wanted and not gain a pound. I was very active and loved playing sports—spending a couple of hours playing basketball or flag football never felt like a workout, and it was easy to make time for it after work and on the weekends. It’s funny how that changes as you grow older.
Although I still love being active and playing sports, it’s harder to find time for it. My job involves lots of travel and events, which can lead to long days and late nights. Generally, my time is not my own as I have to follow strict schedules and accommodate large groups of people. Even though I always stay in hotels with gyms, I often get back late and have to get up early again the next morning—I just don’t have an hour to spend on the bike.
Recently, I’ve been trying to get a quick 15- to 30-minute workout in when I get up. This often means push-ups, sit ups, planks…anything I can get done in the room before getting ready for work. I’ve also tried to burn a few extra calories when I do store visits by parking as far away from the store as I can and walking the mall.
If it were only the lack of time for exercise while on the road, that would be one thing, but my job can also make eating healthfully pretty difficult. I’m incredibly fortunate that I get to attend some amazing events with parties and dinners, but these trade shows, golf tournaments and sales meetings also tend to involve rich food and—let’s be honest—large quantities of alcohol. Don’t get me wrong; my job is not one big party (despite what my friends believe), but there are ample opportunities to partake.
Not all my travel involves coworkers, golf pros or athletes, and this is where I am really trying to make a big impact on my healthy eating. I am trying to avoid the beer or two with dinner. I am making it a point to eat a salad at least once a day. I find that thinking ahead to dinner helps me plan a little better for my lunch—it’s easier to eat a light bowl of soup when I know I’m going to have something a little more filling later in the day. I try to do research on the restaurants that will be around my hotel so that I can make smart choices on those meals. Also, I am going for smaller portions and not stuffing myself each night—considering I used to be the guy who’d order the biggest steak on the menu and eat it all, plus side dishes, that’s a major change.
So now you are probably wondering how I have done since Kristen’s article. I have lost 7 pounds, and I am looking to lose a couple more. The strategies mentioned above have definitely helped, and I realize that just paying more attention to my food and events coming up on my schedule help me to make those smart choices.
It also doesn’t hurt that I have my very own Fit Bottomed Girl at home, so she keeps me honest and eating healthy when I do make it home for a spell. But, if you’ve got any tried-and-true methods for staying fit and healthy while balancing a job like this, I’d love to hear them! —Jared Seymour