Tuesday, May 20, 2014


Well...here I am...

...thinking about the upcoming travel I have for work.

I have work travel planned for the first week in June.  It's a development class for leaders at my agency and lasts a year.  This particular class has 18 participants and we're gonna be holed up in a hotel in Pennsylvania for a week for the kick-off.  I've heard good things about the class, so we'll see how it goes.

The immediate problem is that we're all gonna be together day and night - meals and all.  What are the menus gonna look like?  I had no idea and at first thought that I'd just have to suck it up.  I checked the hotel restaurant and restaurants around the hotel.  I called the hotel to see if the rooms had refrigerators - all sorts of stuff.

But then I thought, "No".  They can either make accommodations for me or else I'll make my own accommodations.  I mean - I don't owe them ANYTHING.  I owe me EVERYTHING!

So last week, I sent an email asking about the food menus.  The reply was that breakfast and lunch were provided as well as one of the dinners.  We're on own own for only three meals.  This wasn't the information I was looking for, so I sent another email asking what these meals would consist of because I had a fairly restrictive diet and was trying to plan ahead.  They said they would get back to me.

This is the reply I received yesterday:

"Both breakfast and lunch are buffets.  Breakfast will consist of assortments of Danish, Bagels, Cereals, Fruit, etc., with beverages that include coffee, tea, and assorted juices.  If there are any vegetarian or vegan needs, we can accommodate if the buffet does not fulfill that need.  Same thing with lunches; each day will vary based on a theme like Mexican, Italian, etc., but again, it will be a buffet with a beverage of coffee and tea.  If there are any vegetarian or vegan needs, we can accommodate if the buffet does not fulfill that need.  Snacks vary each day from chips one day to fruit another day, etc.,  There will be soft drinks in the afternoons.  On Wednesday when we go on the Battlefield Staff Ride we will have boxed lunches and there will be a choice of sandwiches (ham, turkey, roast beef, vegetarian).  Again any vegetarian or vegan needs can be met.  For the dinner, there will be an opportunity to select between two entree choices, chicken or steak, and also vegetarian or vegan."

Well - this sounds perfect...if you want to eat crappy, processed food or if you're a vegetarian or a vegan.  I was a bit irked that the assumption went directly to a vegetarian-type need.  But this lady doesn't know me from Adam and she was being nice.  So I sent the following email back to her.

"I do not eat anything with added sugar - this includes breads of any kind, most fruit, "white" foods, and processed foods, like luncheon meat.  This is my first trip with these restrictions and it dawned on me last week that I might have issues."

A few minutes later, I received a phone call from the lady who was handling all the details.  She was very sweet and sounded quite willing to accommodate my needs.  We'll see how it turns out.  I told her that I could deal as long as I had real food, such as eggs, salad veggies, and meat of some kind.  She called me again later and said the chef was out until Wednesday and she would talk with him then.

I hope this works out.  I'm gonna take some mixed nuts, but I don't think I could live on nuts for that many meals.  I also thought that I could always find some boiled eggs somewhere.  I'm thinking of requesting a refrigerator for my room.  If anyone has any ideas of what I can take with me for my room, I would appreciate it. 

Whatever it takes, I've got to make sure that I give myself the tools I need to be successful on this trip.  I'm really trying to be proactive and not just succumb to whatever is there and presented.  I really would be doing myself a disservice if I didn't try.  Me taking care of me.  And btw, I've already decided that I'm gonna take my scales with me.

The scale was down this morning, so that was a good thing.  I looked up what I am on the BMI chart (not that I have a lot of faith in BMI) - it says that with a BMI of 36.7, I'm only severely obese - a vast improvement from the very severely obese I was calculated to be when I started.  When I get below a BMI of 35, I'll only be a mere moderately obese.  I hope my BMI is never exactly 35, else according to Wikipedia, I'll be BOTH moderately AND severely obese at the same time.  Does that mean that for that instant, I'll be doubly fat or something?!?!?!  I pretty much think BMI is so much BS.

And finally, I worked on the elliptical AGAIN tonight when I got home from work - 25 minutes!!.  TWO DAYS IN A ROW!!!   WhOoP!



  1. That breakfast food sounds like what most hotels offer for their free breakfasts - sounds like a deal until you realize you'd never eat any of that stuff in reality. Good on you for taking charge of your meals! I wonder if there will be a grocery store nearby - if so, I'd buy fresh fruit, Greek yogurt, and other "normal to me" foods. Good luck with this...it's extra effort, but worth it to not lose a week to crap food.

  2. Kuddos for thinking ahead ! if there is a grocery store nearby they may have a decent deli - My local deli has at least some broiled (not fried) chicken pieces, and usually some roasted beef.. not lunch meat - You are worth the effort, dont give up !

  3. Good thinking ahead! At least the lady seems very understanding. I've had times at small conferences when the reponse was "tough luck".

    If your room has a mini-fridge then no problem. Local grocery store.

    If no mini-fridge, bring a cooler and zip-lock bags. Some soft sided coolers are great and can be easliy packed. Most hotels have ice machines so you can refill the bags as needed.

    Good luck!

  4. Congrats on the exercise! And, for planning ahead and sticking up for yourself. I totally believe you can navigate this. As you said, it's doable as long as there are some whole food choices. And, bring snacks that work for you!


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