Lively: Thanks for sharing your day with us! To kick things off, can you tell us about what you do at Vital Proteins and what you enjoy about your role?
Amanda Ford: Absolutely! I am the Trade Promotions Specialist. I like to tell people, picture going to a grocery store – any. We all see those bright yellow tags hanging near products with maybe $1 off or Buy 10/Get 10 type of thing. As a manufacturer within the industry, we financially support those promotions, so I help manage our promotional budget and analyze our return with our sales team.
Every day I feel like this job specifically gives me a reason to work with a different department at Vital which I really love because it’s allowed me to get to know so many co-workers and see how important their functions are to the organization. Although I’m a proud member of our Sales Operations team, I like to wiggle myself in a little bit to every team here!
L: Walk us through your morning routine – how has it changed (or not) since staying home?
AF: Full transparency, I gave up on any type of “routine” for about a week/week and a half when we transitioned to working from home. I thrive off of a routine and doing things at a certain time, but that world got flipped upside down for a while – definitely had to adjust!
I’m back home in Kansas staying with family in a pretty rural area – like REALLY rural so I’ve got lots of open air and space I’m trying to take advantage of. I start my morning around 7:00 a.m. with a walk or run with the four dogs. (Yes, four). I have the sweetest Shiba Inu – Rusty – and my parents have three Labradors who love to run with me. After that I come back and dive into a few emails before getting, what I call, “quarantine ready.” I’ve really enjoyed living sans makeup and trendy clothes, but I try to at least put together a cute athleisure outfit to keep my day going. Throughout the day I try and take 15- to 20-minute increments to get outside and clock some steps so I don’t go stir crazy. Around 6:00 p.m., my family and I try and have a meal or chat about our days and I really love that this is the most “normal” part of life right now. Toss in a few more dog walks and around 9:00 p.m. I settle in for a brief TV binge and aim for lights out at 10:00 p.m.
L: Where have you been getting inspiration for projects or tasks you might be working on throughout the day?
AF: I’m incredibly thankful for having access to the fresh air and open space that I do. Living in such a busy city normally, I think I often underestimate the value of a phone-free walk and some sunshine. It’s really been re-energizing me when I’m feeling worn down or in a slump. I also have regular check-ins with a close group of co-workers. We banter throughout the day about beauty trends we’re trying, feelings we’re having about the current situation – just really normal girl talk which is sincerely helping me find a sense of normalcy right now.
L: Lunchtime! What’s your plan?
AF: I’ve been taking my lunch breaks to go outside and work in a strength set. I love my fitness studio so much in the city, so the number of online resources available right now has been really great. I don’t mind eating while I work so I usually wrap up by putting together a quick salad or sandwich and getting back to work. A 2020 resolution was to work on being a better cook…but we’re putting that on hold for right now.
L: You’re hitting your mid-afternoon slump. How do you re-energize your afternoon?
AF: I am such a snacker. At the office, I’d use a mid-afternoon slump to take a lap around the office, chat with people, grab a snack (we have so many good ones!) and then head back to my desk. I still usually grab a snack in the afternoon here, but I really just strive to remove myself from wherever has been deemed my “workstation” for the day – even if that’s just going to the living room couch. Stepping away from my desk for a few minutes – home or at the office – really helps.
L: How have you been practicing #wellnessfromhome these days?
AF: I’ve been splitting up my runs and my strength circuits instead of trying to do everything first thing in the morning like I’m used to. It’s also allowing me to really focus on my runs.
If you haven’t heard, we have a VP Run Club which is a total passion project for me. I fell in love with the sport a few years ago and when I realized there was such a large community of runners and fitness enthusiasts here, I had to bring everyone together. With the massive help of some really great co-workers at Vital we’ve put together a full team to support the program. We work with run coaches, vital influencers, and the Chicago community to host runs. Right now, we’ve shifted to virtual runs, so we don’t lose our connection with everyone during this time and actually have been able to extend our reach outside of Chicago.
This week kicked off our latest challenge so I’m working on improving my time for a 5-mile in May. I’m excited! I was constantly running around the office trying to get people to join our group and follow us on Strava/Facebook so now I’m just doing it virtually too!
Rapid Fire Questions:
Favorite Podcast? I’m not really a podcast listener. I prefer to get lost in makeup tutorials and reviews on YouTube.
Favorite Workout? Hi-def classes at Studio Three. Don’t underestimate a band workout – it’s harder than it looks!
Binge-Worthy Show? Currently, Chicago PD.
Favorite Vital Proteins Product? I have to pick just one?? It’s a toss-up between Vital Performance™ PRE (Passion Fruit) in the morning and Blueberry Moon Milk Collagen Latte™ at night. PRE gets me going and I always have the best workouts when I incorporate it into my routine. Blueberry Moon Milk is my favorite way to wind down at night. My secret tip is to add just a splash of my favorite non-dairy creamer and froth it.