Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Moving in! From the West Coast...

Greetings friends, family, and blog readers!

I am officially writing from California.It was a long journey, but we seem to have made it intact. Husband is happily at work; cat is happily napping in a sunny spot among the boxes. And as for me? I am desperately trying to get the kitchen in order. Not being able to cook for the last few weeks has been frustrating. The lack of groceries, pots, pans and dishes is a real pain, not to mention stressful!

Moving in general is super stressful, even if everything goes according to plan. And thankfully for us, all the logistical pieces fell into place. But all this stress caused me to contemplate how to best cope with diet and exercise while under pressure. I've compiled the following helpful tips for managing life when it starts coming at you a bit too fast-- be it a move, a house renovation, or any other disruptive but progressive occasion. Take a deep breath and read on.

1. Get a little exercise each day.
My gym membership ran out back east. And I've yet to get one out west. But taking a break-- even for 20 minutes-- to take a walk or stretch out can help relieve tension. Do you have to run a marathon? No. But when it comes to exercise, consistency is key. Something is always better than nothing, and keeps you in the habit.

2. You don't have to eat it all.
Most movers won't take perishable or open food items. This led me to try and eat every single thing in my fridge before vacating. Dinners got very creative (grilled pear, cheese and mustard sandwich, anyone?) After standing over the sink eating stale graham crackers at 11:00 at night, I realized I didn't need to transport all my foodstuffs to California in the form of my own body fat. I am not a bear hibernating for the long winter ahead. There are indeed grocery stores in California. Many. So, lose the guilt and toss it, donate it, or give it away.

3. Rely on your network.
God love those who fed me along my journey. If a neighbor invites you over for chicken and rice, say yes! A home cooked meal is inevitably better for the body and the soul than take-out. And don't be afraid to speak up and ask for help from others.

4. Be prepared. You will get hungry while driving that 8 hour trip, packing up your china, or cleaning the hairball out of your new drain that the previous tenant so graciously left behind. It's easy to reach for the Oreos instead of the apples when you're overtired or over-hungry. So, make sure to still stop and eat at regular intervals, and keep your larder stocked as best you can with easy, single serve, healthy snacks that don't require utensils, refrigeration, or preparation. Good items include apples, single serving baby carrot packs, 100-calorie-pack animal crackers or pretzels, a jar of nuts or a resealable bag of dried fruit.

5. Stay hydrated. Don't pack your water bottle! Keep it close by on both ends of your journey and in between. And keep a small stack of disposable cups by the sink. It took me four days to unwrap all our glasses.

And of course, keep breathing! This too shall pass. Wishing you all a stress-free October!