The Importance of Flexibility

September 10, 2014

update

 

Life has been real crazy over here lately! I’ve moved on from cardiology last week to neurology this week and time is flying by in this internship.

I apologize for such a long abscence. I’ve been swamped. Seriously, if I’m not at the hospital I’m probably sleeping or working on assignments. When I am at work, I don’t have much free time either. I’m lucky if I get to check my emails or texts at any point throughout the day, let alone catch up on blogging (or news in general).

Unfortunately, it’s going to be this way for a little while. I’m in a new rotation every week for the next nine months. That means I will have a new preceptor, new schedule, and new responsibilities and expectations. Every week.

As hard as it sometimes, I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m learning so much and every day is different–it’s never boring.

Relaxing during any second of free time on the weekends has been critical for me.Naturally, that means I’ve had to sacrifice some of my hobbies and prioritize.

Most rotations require me to do additional case studies or reports during the week as well, which means I’m working on them at home after work. By the time the weekend rolls around I’m scrambling to do all my errands and cleaning for the week all while trying to catch up on sleep.

Did I mention the numerous presentations, homework assignments, and research project I have to do outside of work? This year is going to fly by at the blink of an eye!

The good news is that it’s temporary, and pretty soon all my hard work will pay off when I finally become a dietitian!

Those of you who are planning on applying to dietetic internships this year–I’m not trying to scare you. I’m trying to warn you that it will be a lot of work, but it will be worth every second of it. The point of the internship is to learn and be better clinicians. You will be able to apply the information you use in school and understand the importance of it.

The best advice I have for anyone starting an internship in the future: be flexible. You will work the same hours as your preceptor and therefore will never have the same schedule. Some days you work a normal 8 hours. Some days you will work 10+ hours and eat lunch at your desk (my first day in cardiology).

As Estee Lauder once said, “I never dreamed about success. I worked for it.

It will all  be worth it!

 

P.S. In the meantime, tell me what you want! Don’t hesitate to comment and tell me what you want to read more about. If you’re curious about my specific rotations or day-to-day activities let me know! If you have no idea what a dietitian does in the hospital (like my mom) and you’re curious about it, speak up! I want to make the most out of my posts and give you all the nitty gritty details.

 

 

Moving Forward

August 25, 2014

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 [ dress  // sunglasses // tote ]

 

This dress is so easy (and comfortable) which is a huge priority with the heat we’re experiencing down here. I picked it up at J.crew (on sale!) a few weeks back, and I’ve felt pressured to wear it before summer ends. Unfortunately, it’s too short for me to wear to work (we have a strict dress code)–more on that later.

Luckily, it was exactly what I wanted to wear when Greg and I ventured out on Friday evening to celebrate the completion of my first official clinical rotation. We went to one of my favorite places back in Arizona– True Food Kitchen. It was comforting to be at one of my favorite places, but also makes me miss Arizona even more!

My first rotation in general medicine (aka “gen med” as we call it) was a whirlwind. On top of seeing patients, we had quite a few intern meetings to attend throughout the week, which means I felt like I didn’t have enough time to see enough patients! Our schedules vary from week to week so it won’t always be this way, but I was honestly sad (in a happy way) to leave that rotation on Friday. My preceptors were incredible and taught me all the necessary skills to succeed for the week.

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Passing the Days in General Medicine

August 19, 2014

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Enjoying your coffee on this lovely Tuesday?

As you are reading this, I’m at the hospital knee-deep in assessing patient charts and conducting diet educations. Yesterday I began my first clinical rotation in general medicine. In other words, I’ll be working in the hospital on the floors with less critically ill patients. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to detail my patient experiences too much (HIPAA is no joke!).

I can tell you I’ll be seeing quite a few nutrition consults for conditions such as diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), pancreatitis, kidney failure, pneumonia, and more. By the end of the week I will be charting and conducting my own assessments and diet educations. Crazy!

I still haven’t established much of a rhythm or routine yet–which is evidenced by my severe lack-of-blogging.

I really don’t have any excuses for my absence–except for my lack of internet connection everyday. As interns, we aren’t allowed to look at our phones very often. Obviously, it wouldn’t be professional since we are with our preceptors all day. The only time I have my phone is during lunch–which we eat in the cafeteria in the basement of the hospital (which completely lacks cell phone service). Remember this post? Be careful what you wish for!

To be honest, I really don’t have that much “free” time. I spent a majority of the weekend doing my homework for my rotation and looking back on my school notes to brush up on my clinical knowledge. I spend as much time as I can each day preparing myself for the next day. This is necessary for me to be able to get the most out of each rotation and avoid feeling completely overwhelmed everyday.

I put 110% effort into my schoolwork to get to this point and I want to take advantage of it and get the most out of my internship. This means putting forth just as much effort every single day–even if I have to sacrifice my time in the blog world for a little while.

As you can imagine, the past two weeks I’ve been overloaded with information–which has been equally thrilling and exhausting.

I spend 8 hours at the hospital (on my A-game the entire time), and no day is the same as the last.By the time I leave the hospital for the day, drive home, go to the gym, eat dinner, and go for a walk with Greg and Dex– I’m beat.

Is it all worth it? Absolutely. Every single second of it.

I’ve never been so tired–but so excited and happy about what I learned that day. I love getting up in the mornings knowing that each day is different and that I can sharpen my nutrition skills even further. Can you tell I love this profession?

 

[Image via]

The First Week

August 11, 2014

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Incredible.

This word sums up the first week of my dietetic internship. Actually, that wasn’t good enough. A better word would be…outstanding.

It’s only been a week, but I already feel like I’m part of the family at Baylor. The first week was strictly for orientation purposes in which I attended many human resources and safety presentations. However, I got a better sense of what life will be like as an intern.

After the first week I left with the feeling that this year will be like having a full year of orientation. Each week I have a new rotation, which means I have to prepare myself and do my assigned homework beforehand to avoid the “deer in the headlights” look every Monday morning.

You know that feeling when you first start a new job and you’re slightly overwhelmed because you don’t know what you’re doing yet? That’s what I will encounter every week for the remainder of my internship. Although I’m initially intimidated, I know that it will provide the best possible training to be a dietitian. The purpose of the dietetic internship is to teach you how to apply the information you learned in school and think like a registered dietitian.

For example, I learned more in the hour-long lecture on wounds this week than my entire medical nutrition therapy class. If you weren’t aware, dietitians play an important role in the healing of wounds and burns. Excessive amounts of fluids and electrolytes are lost through large wounds, and it takes a very high amount of calories and proteins to heal the injury. Dietitians work with the healthcare team to tweak the amount of calories, protein, and fluid each patient needs to speed up recovery without damaging the internal organs.

On top of my different rotations each week, we will have research projects and readings/assignments to complete outside of work. This week was exhausting for me, probably because I’m not used to the full-time (40+ hours/week) workload yet. Waking up early hasn’t been difficult, but I’ve struggled with the 3:00 slump and a severe lack of energy when I get home in the evening. If this continues, I may force myself to hit the gym in the morning instead of relying on “how I feel” when I get home from the hospital.

The remainder of August I will be rotating through general medicine and the rehabilitation clinic. In September I have cardiology, neurology, diabetes, and food purchasing rotations.

It will be exhausting, but very rewarding!

 

Dietetic Internship Goals

August 4, 2014

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Today is the day!

The day I’ve been waiting years for. You can now call me Kathryn the dietetic intern! Words cannot describe how grateful and overjoyed I am to be in this position. I feel so blessed!

As I start my dietetic internship today, I have a similar knot in my stomach as I did when I went away to college. I was an incoming freshman in a new city surrounded by a whole new group of friends. I was unsure what my workload would be like and if I could handle it.

Despite a few nerves, I’m really excited to finally start (the anticipation has been killing me). The fear of the unknown and “not knowing what to expect” this year has been accumulating this week.

What I do know is that my work hours and assignments will vary based on each rotation–which means this year will fly by. I’m a planner, and the “unknown” work schedule worries me a bit.

The good news? I won’t have time to sit around and worry about it! Instead, I’m focusing on all the positives. I will come out of this internship with so much knowledge and experience and in the grand scheme of things my schedule won’t even matter.

I came across the article Burnt Out? 7 Simple Ways to Feel Renewed on Refinery29 last week and it reminded me that I need to take more time to unplug. My #1 goal this year is to not get burnt out. Easier said than done.

Although I feel much more settled than I did when I first arrived in Texas, I can’t help feeling disoriented because I haven’t develop a routine yet. Balancing “work” at my internship with my life at home will be key this year. To help myself adjust better to my new schedule, new program, and new city I made the following lifestyle goals:

1. Cook at home more often.

This goal is critical for me this year. As a future dietitian, I’m almost embarrassed to admit how much I dislike cooking. I used to enjoy it a lot more, and somewhere along the way I lost track of this. I don’t normally plan my meals out, but this will be a necessity to help me develop a routine.

2. Stop using Pinterest as a source for all recipes.

If I’m on the hunt for a new recipe I almost always turn to Pinterest. Instead of spending hours on the computer trying to find recipes I like, I plan to make an old school recipe book. I need a one stop shop in my kitchen to quickly reference my favorite recipes to plan my meals better. Pinterest is a great resource for recipes, but it will be easier for me to cook at home if I write them down.

3. Grocery shop more efficiently.

This goes along with #2 and #3–since I don’t plan my meals very well, I’m a terrible grocery shopper. I go quite frequently to grab a “few things” here and there, but rarely stock up on ingredients for full meals. I usually end up with a bunch of snacks in my cart and end up eating soup or PB&J for most meals. When I go to Whole Foods I like to get some of their pre-made pasta or quinoa salads, but even those get old after a while. My goal is to plan my meals better, write down recipes, and get the ingredients at the grocery store every week!

4. Make sleep and fitness a higher priority.

I developed the bad habit of staying up late to do my homework this past year. It’s been a really hard habit to break so far, but I’m optimistic that my long work days this year will force me to go to bed early again. I’ve had full-time jobs in the past, but going back to school turned me back into a night owl. I’ll have to get used to going to bed at a reasonable time and waking up early in the morning again. Forcing myself to stay off the computer and get some rest will be crucial this year.

I also tend to sacrifice my workouts when I’m stressed and exhausted. Sometimes it’s easy for me to forget that exercise actually helps increase your energy levels. Again, I’m optimistic that when I settle into the routine of working full-time again that I will develop a fitness schedule.

 

I will recap my first week in a future post. I can’t wait to share all my experiences this year with you!

 

xo

How Small Changes Can Make a Big Impact

July 31, 2014

pintuck bedding

 

During the lengthy drive to Texas last week, my mom and I listened to the audiobook The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell. If you haven’t read any of his books, I highly recommend them. I read Outliers a few years ago and really liked it, so I downloaded another one of his books on the app Audible (great one for audiobooks if you don’t have it already). Gladwell’s books are inspirational–but not in a sappy way. They make you think outside the box and subtly change your viewpoints.

As a former marketing major, The Tipping Point was right up my alley. The book describes how social “trends” or ideas can take off from the smallest changes. Gladwell details how social trends and shows like Sesame Street grew in popularity from very small strategic changes. My favorite part of this book is how the strategies and examples the author explains can be applied to real life.

It gave me good insight as I start of my dietetic internship next week. Even the smallest effects can make a big impact. Every little bit counts. Work hard and perform every task of your job to best of your ability with a smile on your face. People will notice and doors will open for you in your career.

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Southern Hospitality

July 25, 2014

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Sunflower

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[mini peppers growing in the urban garden at our complex]

 

Did you know that the sun doesn’t set until 9:00 p.m. in some parts of the country? Crazy, right? I remember when I first moved to Arizona, it was really tough for me to come to terms with the fact that the sun sets at 7:30 in the summer. Texas, thank you for the extended daylight!

As a result of the late sunsets, I’ve been so productive in terms of getting my errands done. The weather has been gorgeous this week, and I’ve been taking advantage of it. As a result, I haven’t been inside on the computer very much. The exception was Wednesday evening when I had to comfort Dexter as he experienced his first Texas thunderstorm. Thankfully, he forgot about it the next day when it was sunny and he was able to sprint around on the grass.

Each day that passes by I start to feel slightly more acclimated. My friend Erica @ Luv in the Bubble shared this post about moving with me and it really hit the spot. I can definitely relate to the fact that it takes at least a year for you to adjust completely after moving to a new city. I know this is true from the last time I moved.

The first year I was in Arizona I felt out of whack a bit, but was so excited to live in a new city that I didn’t mind. Ohio will always be my home, but I made so may friends and memories in Arizona and I really grew to love it. I also loved being within driving distance to California and Las Vegas. Who knows, maybe we will move back one day. Only time will tell!

I can’t believe I’m starting my dietetic internship in a little over a week. I received my rotation schedule for the year and I have nearly 30 rotations. My jaw dropped when I saw it. I’m really excited I will be exposed to practically all areas of clinical nutrition. Everything from cardiology, oncology, trauma, neurology, bariatrics, NICU, and more. I will have so much to blog about!

My work schedule varies with each rotation and flexibility will be a necessary trait for me to have this year. I hope to continue my usual Monday/Wednesday/Friday posting schedule. It’s much more manageable (and enjoyable) for me than posting everyday.

I’m excited to explore more of the city this weekend with Greg. Dallas has some beautiful suburbs. Uptown, Highland Park, and University Park are so charming and scenic–I love the southern architecture. If you have any restaurant suggestions in Dallas let me know!

Transitioning in the Southwest

July 23, 2014

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floral blouse // shorts // sandals (sold out)- similar // purse // sunglasses

 

Greetings from North Texas!

I’m slowly adjusting to life here after arriving Sunday afternoon. I’m in love with my apartment and will probably spend every second in here when I’m not at Baylor. If you follow me on instagram, you saw a few sneak peeks of it. Having a new place that I adore has really helped make the transition to life in Texas a little bit easier.

I have to admit, I really miss Arizona and feel a bit disoriented here. I haven’t learned my way around yet and have to rely on my iPhone maps app to get to anywhere– even the grocery store. I’m not giving up on Dallas yet, I know it will take time for me to adjust. I’ve only been here a few days–it will take me a while to get fully acclimated.

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The Best Health & Fitness Giveaway

July 21, 2014

 

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Hey ya’ll!

I made it to Dallas safe and sound. Thank you all for the wonderful comments this week, they helped brighten my day everytime I read them!

I will detail our trip later (when we have internet set up). I have dozens of boxes that I should probably unpack in the near future. Plus, I’m just not a cell phone blogger. I read all my comments on the WordPress app, but when it comes to writing posts there’s just no way I can do it on a small screen.

In the mean time I have something amazing to tie you over….

I’m joining a few amazing bloggers for an awesome group giveaway hosted by Lisa over at The Skinny on Health!

The box is full of our favorite products out there, like custom fitness DVDs, vitamins, workout supplements, super pretty jewelry and hair accessories, exercise equipment, and more, from companies like Grace Lace and IronPiYo HardcoreDesigner WheyVega SportDr. Josh AxeShapeologyMy Beauty TeaBachLorna JaneShredManitoba HarvestSmarty PantsFabFitFun, and BuluBox!  Seriously, does it get any better than this?

Definitely check that out and enter to win some free swag! Also, don’t forget to follow all of my social media adventures with the move to Texas.

Instagram: @style_and_greens

Bloglovin: @styleandgreens

Facebook: @styleandgreens

Twitter: @styleandgreens

 

Enter to win the giveaway here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Farewell to My Second Home

July 18, 2014

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Me-mountain

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palm trees

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camelback

[The first time I made it to the top of Camelback Mountain, nearly 3 years ago!]

 

This is the day I’ve been dreading for the past 3 months….my last day in Arizona.

I couldn’t bring myself to include any other pictures than a few of my favorite Arizona landscapes that I’ve taken over the past few years. Most of these are old (which is obvious from the awful reddish/brownish hair color in the second picture). Although they are outdated, these pictures perfectly depict the beautiful desert wildlife and what I will envision after I leave Arizona.

Today we’re spending the day packing everything up and hitting the road first thing Saturday morning. It seems like only yesterday I was announcing my move to Texas and acceptance to a dietetic internship. Where has the time gone?

Nobody likes saying ‘goodbye’. Nobody enjoys leaving their comfort zone and their life behind. These things go without saying.

What I’m most surprised about is how much I’ve grown to love it here. We moved here over three years ago and didn’t know a single person in Arizona. Although this was initially intimidating (and exhausting) to move across country and not know a single soul, it was probably one of the best things that ever happened to me.

Moving from Cincinnati (a much smaller city), was eye-opening for me. I lived there for 6 years and mostly hung out with the same friends since college, so I never had to “put myself out there” and make friends. Some of my best friends still live there, but moving away gave me a chance to meet a variety of different people (that I otherwise wouldn’t have).

Moving is still a foreign concept to me–although it might not seem that way considering Dallas will be the 4th city I’ve lived in the past decade. I lived in the same house in Cleveland from age 4 until I went away to college and will always consider it my home. But going away to college and then moving across the country really helped me grow and mature tremendously.

I know we will be back here someday to visit friends (or vacation), but I’m unsure when that will be. This is one of the many factors that are making it hard for me to leave here. This week has been tough for me, and I haven’t slept well because of it. Many tears have been shed, and there are probably more to come.

The good news is when we arrive in Dallas this weekend I’ll be so busy I won’t have much time to dwell on everything.

 

Cheers to a new chapter in life! xo

P.S. Follow my travel adventures across the southwest this weekend on twitter and instagram!

 

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