After Rest, Trainer Takes Pepsi ChallengeTo hear Tom Trainer discuss the rigors he experienced as a global CIO, you\u2019d think it was a stress factory."You\u2019re like a football player who\u2019s playing fatigued all the time," Trainer says. "You\u2019re struggling with jet lag from flying three to four times each week. You\u2019re struggling to accomplish your leadership agenda. It\u2019s a difficult job. You\u2019ve got to want to do it because you\u2019re tested. You\u2019re tested every single day," he says. Trainer, 57, acknowledges that he looks 10 years older because of the strain he experienced as a CIO.With that said, you might wonder why, after a three-and-a-half-year hiatus punctuated by trips to his vacation home in Provence, France, Trainer joined PepsiCo as its senior vice president and global CIO last May. Indeed, the decision to go back to work full-time took Trainer a couple of months to reach. It turned out that early retirement was the best career move he could have made.When Trainer left his last job, as Citigroup CIO, it wasn\u2019t entirely planned. Sure, he says, he was "ready for a break." But he left the company shortly after the retirement of his strategic ally, John Reed, Sanford Weill\u2019s then co-CEO. He felt that his and Weill\u2019s visions of IT didn\u2019t square. And so it was that Trainer\u2019s sabbatical gave him some time and distance from working as a CIO (though he did serve as a board member for an IT startup called Enamics). And he realized how much he enjoys the challenge of the CIO role, the mental stimulation that comes with solving business problems. This drive, along with his time walking the golf course, made him feel fit for a new opportunity.Meanwhile, PepsiCo was looking for a global CIO. "Pepsi realized it had some great talent in its divisional CIOs but didn\u2019t have anyone who could step up to this role," says Katie Graham, a recruiter with Heidrick & Struggles. Graham and her colleague Kelvin Thompson helped convince Trainer to take the position with PepsiCo. Thompson says veterans such as Trainer are needed to fill an IT leadership void.Trainer\u2019s reasons for taking the Pepsi challenge:n He was rested and ready. Not only did golf and rest make him feel physically better, Trainer also felt that he had bandwidth to spare. n A good match. Trainer says his experience leading and managing organizational change enabled by IT was a good match for Pepsi\u2019s strategic goals. n He saw a path to success. Trainer was confident he could help PepsiCo. Trainer also forced himself to consider the downside of returning to work. He wondered if he was forgetting the hard times and remembering only the excitement and gratification that comes from, as he puts it, seeing the results of one\u2019s own hard work in the achievements of others. "Ultimately, I felt I was ready," he says. "I had the energy and certainly the ability and the willingness, and I wanted to do it, so I did."These days, Trainer runs from meeting to meeting keeping tabs on PepsiCo\u2019s IT and business transformation initiatives. (He declined to discuss PepsiCo\u2019s strategic projects.) Indeed, when CIO caught up with him by telephone, Trainer sounded short of breath. But in spite of the frantic pace, he doesn\u2019t long for a return to a retiree\u2019s open schedule."I find I\u2019m reenergized by having had the time off and by realizing that I really love what I do," he says. "I don\u2019t like it every day. I don\u2019t like every situation, but I really love what I do."News of other movesTwo CIOs of utilities were elected to be directors of Reflex Security, which develops intrusion detection systems: Becky Blalock, senior vice president and CIO of Southern Co., and Cecil Smith, senior vice president and CIO of Duke Energy. In other boardroom news, Doreen A. Wright, senior vice president and CIO of Campbell Soup, was named to the Yankee Candle\u2019s board of directors. And Randy Stone was recently appointed to logistics software company Yantra\u2019s board of directors. Stone now serves as the CIO of test-equipment maker Teradyne.