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Healthy Living for Mom: Working Mom Nutrition

You know what offices are full of? Donuts.
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Two months ago my husband and I pulled a switcheroo. I started working full-time, outside my home, and he now stays at home with our kiddos.

With a mere eight weeks under our belt, we’re still exploring the wonderful opportunities and navigating through the challenges that this new lifestyle brings.

For today, I’m just going to tackle the healthy living portion of this new dynamic rather than discuss the fact that my baby seems to grow several inches each day while I’m at work and that he’ll only give Daddy kisses.


You know what offices are full of? Donuts. Vending machines. Breakfast meetings at a bakery. Unexpected lunch meetings at tasty restaurants. Random leftover muffins from an early morning client meeting.

Breakfast meeting.

Breakfast meeting.

When I was at home I could control my nutritional environment. If I could keep treats out of my grocery cart, I was pretty much home free. I had established a steady nutritional routine and it was working. As I got ready to hit the office each day I knew that I would pack snacks and lunches, but I was worried about being sedentary for much of the day.

In college I worked at the Gap, so between bustling around campus and selling jeans at the mall, I was on my feet a lot. When I graduated and got a full-time job in an office, I started packing on the pounds, so to me, working in an office was synonymous with weight-gain.

So after spending two months back in an office, surrounded by temptation, I’ve honed a few of the lessons I’ve learned in the last 11 months since starting my Healthy Living for Mom series...

Embrace the random donuts.

My desk is right by the treat table. I can actually smell the baked goods that my generous co-workers bring in to share. Guess what? It’s totally okay to cut a donut into quarters and take a small piece. Trust me, a quarter donut is sometimes just the ticket.

Random donuts.

Random donuts.

Plan to splurge. 

It’s easier to resist the random donuts if you have a delicious plan in place. Friday night is at-home-date-night at our house. After the kids go to bed, my husband and I get takeout and watch a movie. I look forward to my Cafe Rio Pork Barbacoa salad ALL week.

I also look forward to the occasional weekend beer on the deck.

I also look forward to the occasional weekend beer on the deck.

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Saturday is also rapidly becoming the day in the week when I sneak away for some one-on-one time with my girl. Frozen yogurt is usually involved.

Yogurt date.

Yogurt date.

Revisit your eating schedule based on your activity.

It’s been harder to find the time to workout these days. I’ve also been getting up early to head to work—too early to eat breakfast at home. So to address the fact that I’m getting less physical activity and I need to eat a bit later, I’ve started taking my breakfast to work and skipping my mid-morning snack.

On the weekends, when I’m able to sleep a bit later and run around (literally) more, I eat more frequently to keep my body appropriately fueled up.

Advanced preparation is ALWAYS the answer. 

Kick variety to the curb. It’s too time consuming. During the first few weeks, I would spend 45 minutes each evening prepping and planning my snacks and lunch for the next day. Now I plan breakfast, lunch and snacks a week at a time.

I have no problem eating the same quinoa salad for lunch all week. I could eat strawberries, yogurt and granola every morning for breakfast and stay a happy camper. I spend about a hour each Sunday prepping for the week and then it’s smooth sailing through Friday.

Salad. Five days a week.

Salad. Five days a week.

Have an emergency stash. 

Everyone has snacks in their desk, but if you’ve got a bit of a commute, do yourself a favor and keep some peanuts or almonds in the car. Traffic is a bummer. Traffic and ravenous hunger is THE WORST.

Weight Loss Stats

Starting Weight: 195.5 pounds

Week 50 Weight: 148.5 pounds (-47 pounds total)

Here’s my previous Healthy Living for Mom post and you can see the whole series here


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