Well THAT Didn’t Work

ClickHandler.ashxI’m not a morning person.  Ask my family, even my friends.  They will tell you.  Early morning?  Not my gig.  Hey, by 9 am I’m fine.  But before that?  Not so much.

I’ve been reading about setting goals.  Starting with small ones.

For a long time I’ve wanted to be that person.  The kind that works out first thing in the morning.  You know, get it done with so there’s no excuses.  Have plenty of time for other things later in the day.  And such and such and so and so.

In my reading it said to start small.  Take it a piece at a time.  Alright-y then.  I decided to get up 30 minutes early five days a week to walk 20 minutes on the treadmill.  I. Can. Do. This.

I realize that’s not enough exercise for me.  But I’m starting small, remember?  And I can still work out later in the day.  Baby steps.  Especially in the morning.  Getting up 30 minutes earlier than normal is going to be hard enough.

So TODAY was the day.  Actually yesterday was the day, but that didn’t work out so well.

So TODAY!  Last night I set my alarm 30 minutes ahead of my usual time.  For me that brought it to a whopping 6:30 am.  I know I know, not early at all for you morning folk.  Cut me some slack here people, I’m trying.  I even set my cell phone for 6:30–all the way in the closet–so I couldn’t groggily hit snooze and sleep my way through exercise.

Alarm rings.  Second alarm rings. I get up and force contacts into my eyes. I had my workout clothes laid out all ready to go (planning is so important you know). All I had to do was plop them on.  Oops, forgot a sports bra.  The only clean ones I had are in the laundry room.  That room also doubles as the dogs bedroom.  I didn’t want to wake her or I’d have to take her outside.  Well, it’s just a little walk I’m sure my B cups can handle a regular bra today.

Getting dressed my foggy brain comes to realize that I haven’t given myself as much time as I should have.  While most of the household wakes up at 7 am, I get my 15 year old daughter up at 6:50 because her bus comes sooner.  Oh well, I’ll just do 10 minutes on the treadmill, wake her up, and then 10 minutes more.  I can do this.

In walks my 13 year old daughter.  She’s not feeling well.  I kiss her forehead and no fever.  But she’s obviously miserable.  I’m not totally surprised since she fell asleep at the supper table last night.  Nope, that’s not normal.  I told her to go back to bed.  Ok, shoes on I can do this…

What’s that I hear?  Dog’s awake.  Crud.  If I don’t let her out she’ll wake up the whole house.  Tick tock tick tock goes the clock.

Dogs out on her leash.  Sniffing every possible place to go.  Come on already, times ticking away!  MORNINGS, grrrr.

I let the dog in and looked at the clock.  6:50.  Where did the time go?!?  I woke up my eldest.  Apparently I have to get up 40 minutes early to walk for 20?  This is ridiculous.  I hopped into bed with my husband for 8 minutes.  Tomorrow is a new day.

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Local Bible Study

MadetoCraveBook_largeCalling all LOCAL LADIES!  For all you beautiful women in my area,   we are starting a 6 week DVD Bible Study on Lysa TerKeurst’s book Made to Crave.  Starting next Tuesday, FEBRUARY 18 at 7 pm!

Lysa is the President of Proverbs 31 Ministries.  Two years ago I had the privilege of hearing her speak…just amazing.  I’ve read the book more than once and it really hits home.

This is from the website:

Craving isn’t a bad thing.

Has food become more about frustration than fulfillment? Made To Crave is the missing link between a woman’s desire to be healthy and the spiritual empowerment necessary to make that happen. Author, Lysa TerKeurst, personally understands the battle that women face. In Made To Crave, she will help you:

  • Break the cycle of “I’ll start again on Monday,” and feel good about yourself today.
  • Stop agonizing over numbers on the scale and make peace with your body.
  • Replace rationalization that lead to diet failure with wisdom that leads to victory.
  • Reach your healthy goals and grow closer to God through the process.

This book is not a how-to manual or the latest, greatest dieting plan, Made To Crave is a helpful companion to use alongside whatever healthy eating approach you choose-a book and Bible study to help you find the “want to” in how to make healthy lifestyle changes. Join Lysa and experience all that you were made to crave!

I would sum up the book as directing us to go to God when we crave…because that’s what we’re really craving. Comment or email me for more information at trytrytryathlete@gmail.com.

How do you Fly?

Are you ready to fly?  Do you want to SOAR?!  I know I do.  I’m ready to take off.  To soar on wings like eagles, run and not grow weary, walk and not be faint (Is 40:31).

Doesn’t that sound awesome?  But there’s a problem.  Most days I feel like I have lead feet.  Heavy, leaded, dragging feet.

How do I FLY?!  Lord, tell me!  The beginning of the above verse says,

“those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength”

Man, I need me some renewed strength!

Do you know what’s in close relationship with hope?  LOVE.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

That’s I Corinthians 13:13.

Flylady has an acronym for FLY that I find to be full of truth.  Finally Loving Yourself.

I really wasn’t raised that way.  To love myself.  Others first, right?  Loving yourself is dangerous because it could cause you to put yourself first.  To trample on others’ needs.  We need to be humble.

It wasn’t until I read a book by Rick Warren with this quote that I understood true humility.

Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.  -C.S. Lewis

What did I learn? That it’s ok to love myself.  In fact, dare I say God expects us to love ourselves?  The gospels Matthew, Mark and Luke all tell us that the second greatest commandment is to love our neighbors (others) as we love ourselves.  Actually, the Gospels simply recorded it.  Jesus said it.  We tend to focus on the “neighbors” part–and it’s extremely important, I’m not trying to diminish it–and ignore the “ourselves” part.

God loved us enough to send His Son to DIE a horrible death for us.  The Bible is full of passages that describe how much He loves us.  He created us.  He LOVES us.  So…if we don’t love ourselves, are we telling God He’s wrong?

Ouch.

Honestly, we don’t have the energy to love others if we don’t love ourselves, too.

Let’s FLY together, shall we?

Take care of yourselves, friends.  Show yourself love.

But I’m on VACATION!

We have so many excuses, don’t we?

Hey, I’m preaching to the choir here (that’s really a dumb cliche, but you know what I mean).

I’m too busy.  I’m too tired.  I’m too stressed.  I don’t have enough time.  I don’t have enough money.  No one supports me.  I have a poor metabolism.

Blah blah blah.

Yes, the person next door might look like they have more advantages than you.  It might be true.  But I’d dare bet you have advantages they don’t have.

One of our Winter Challenge members, Dyan, went on a romantic vacation with her husband.  A vacation to a resort in Mexico.  Ahh….sounds fabulous.  Especially in this frigid winter weather.  However, it interrupted the first two weeks of our Challenge.  I was sooo excited that even with her vacation she still managed to earn 89% of her points for week 1 and week 2!  What?!?  No, I’m on VACATION excuse?!?  So I asked her how she did it.  This is what she said.

I’ll admit, I rarely back down from a challenge. Especially when it involves health, wellness and/or fitness. So when the invitation to participate in the Healthy Habits Challenge came, what did I do? I hesitated.

Yes, you heard me. I hesitated. Why? Mexico. Cancun, to be exact.

My husband and I had just booked a vacation which would interrupt weeks 1 and 2 of the challenge. I didn’t want to look, and feel, like a failure. Simply not participating would cure that, right? Wrong. I would still feel like I’d failed myself.

God never gives up on me. NEVER. Even in times when I’ve failed Him. It’s not in His vocabulary, so why should it be in mine?

I accepted the invitation to participate and made up my mind to do my best. I have this sign in my house that says “Do what you can with what you have where you are”. Okay, I can do that! Even in Mexico.

I packed all the necessary challenge papers for weeks 1 and 2 along with my Bible for encouragement and simply planned to do my best.

It turned out to be much easier than I expected. Long walks on the beach or a swim in the pool for exercise, fruit and vegetables available at every meal, bottled water always near, Facebook to contact another challenge member, the food journal on my bedside table.

Oh, I’m NOT saying it was always a piece of cake, but being consistent while on vacation has made continuing the challenge at home easier and more enjoyable.

I’m so glad I didn’t back down from the Healthy Habits Challenge. Or the challenge I gave myself to keep working at it while on vacation.

Do what you can. With what you have. Where you are. Make goals. Be aware of them. Stick to them. Challenge yourself! You’ll be amazed by who you are and what you can do!

Thanks for sharing, Dyan.

No excuses.  You can do it.

Breakfast of Champions?

Yesterday I took my eldest daughter to school.  It’s homecoming week.  Each day during the week they’ve had different “themes.” Yesterday was “senior citizen day” (all you senior citizens try not to roll your eyes!).  Of all things, she borrowed a wheelchair to ride around in for the day.  That along with a bun in her hair–which we sprayed white–a blanket and a stuffed cat on her lap, she was ready for her latter years.

The wheelchair was not bus worthy, so we opted for the car.  Before we left, she proposed we go through Taco Johns for breakfast.  It’s not something we normally do, so I agreed.  It would be a special treat.

We went all out.  Got the whole meal.  Bacon and egg burrito (I ordered sausage but I think I got bacon?), oj, and of course, potato oles (I love saying that word…ole!  Makes me want to throw my hat up in the air or something).

I dropped her off and, in the usual American way, ate my food while driving home.

Oh. My. Word.

My stomach was not impressed.  Greasy hashbrown-like potatoes and a heavy duty burrito to start off my day.  The only thing my stomach liked was the orange juice, which was twice the size it needed to be.  I couldn’t even finish the burrito.

Apparently my stomach has been adapting to my healthier breakfast eating habits.  Yikes.

Not only was my stomach complaining, I was tired.  I no longer felt like working out.  And frankly, I was kinda depressed.  Bummed.  I felt yucky.

Not the breakfast of champions.  Oof.  Along with that, I had consumed 75% of my daily calories, and it was only 9 am.

Isn’t it interesting how food affects us?  It affects how we feel, how we perform, our energy level, and our health.

The opposite is true as well.  Where not-so-good-for-you foods can have an adverse effect, healthy foods can have a good effect.  I always feel great after having a green smoothie.  My energy level goes up and I feel more optimistic.

Long ago, God let us know that all foods are now acceptable. But that doesn’t mean they’re always the right choice.

In I Corinthians Paul says, “Everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial.” (6:12)

This verse has come to mind a lot lately. Let’s be wise about our choices.  Our bodies will thank us for it!

Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

This past week in the Midwest has been frigid.  Monday the kids didn’t have school…wind chills were in the -50s F!  That’s frostbite in 5-10 minutes kinda cold.  Yikes.

But it’s the inside cold that’s been bothering me.

The cold inside my head and chest!  I’ve had a cold since before Christmas and I can’t seem to knock it out.  I blame myself.  Over the holidays I wasn’t taking care of myself.  Not enough sleep, little exercise and plenty of sweets equals a recipe for sickness.

Blech.  I wish it would go away!  Now I am taking care of myself but it wants to hang out with me for the long haul.

However, one thing I haven’t been doing with this cold?  Exercising.

Forget that fact that uhm, breathing is necessary to exercise and I would be wheezing for air and possibly coughing up a lung.  My body needs all it’s extra energy to heal from this infection or virus.

Now, I cannot and should not use the sniffles as an excuse not to exercise!

This is what the Mayo Clinic has to say:

As a general guide for exercise and illness, consider this:

  • Exercise is usually OK if your signs and symptoms are all “above the neck” — symptoms you may have with a common cold, such as runny nose, nasal congestion, sneezing or minor sore throat. Consider reducing the intensity and length of your workout, though, or you may feel worse. Instead of going for a run, take a walk, for example.
  • Don’t exercise if your signs and symptoms are “below the neck” — such as chest congestion, hacking cough or upset stomach.
  • Don’t exercise if you have a fever, fatigue or widespread muscle aches.

Let your body be your guide.

Listen to your body.  But don’t let it be an excuse.

I hope to be back at it soon.  Maybe I’ll go for a short walk.  On the treadmill of course, cuz baby it’s cold outside!

Why Sign up for the Challenge?

Have you signed up for the Winter Challenge yet?

Why should you sign up?

Here’s an email I received from a member of our last challenge.  She sent it about a week after we finished.

 It is hard to believe we made it through a 6 week Health Challenge.  Today I finally figured out why I have no energy.  For 6 weeks I worked hard to eat right, exercise, drink water, and sleep.  I can’t believe how much I miss eating right.  So today I went back to exercising, drinking water and getting some of my fruit and veggies.  I want to thank you for investing time with a bunch of stubborn women and maybe a few men. It really makes me look at how my life is better when I am being healthy instead of getting back in my bad habits. Thanks for all your work in doing this challenge.

My opinion?  We need to be healthy in order to fully live our lives.  To live the life God desires us to live.  To live in JOY and to do the work He has for us.  Sometimes our health is out of our control.  Many times there are things we can do to keep ourselves healthy.

I know this.  Yet I so easily fall back into my bad habits.  Especially over the holidays.  Most of us know what to do.  We just need a little encouragement and accountability to do so.

So if you haven’t yet, I encourage you to join us!  You can leave a comment here, or contact me through the
“contact me” tab above.

Happy 2014!

Health and Habits Challenge Winter 2014!

Health Challenge PosterNew Year = New Years Resolution?

Or are you one of those Resolution Haters?

Either way, are you up for a CHALLENGE??  Would you like to start 2014 as a healthy year?

It’s time for our second Health and Habits Challenge!!  Maybe you were part of the first challenge.  If so, welcome back and there are a couple of fun new changes.  Maybe this is all new to you.  If so, we’re excited to have you!

It’s a 6 week challenge.  In order to join, simply email me, and I’ll get you started!  But before you do, here are some nuts and bolts to get your juices flowing:

  • This is an 6-Week Challenge from Monday, January 6 – Sunday, February 16, 2014
  • Cost is FREE!
  • Challenge is limited to people 13 years old and up
  • There is a weekly point sheet for each of the 6 weeks
  • You will be given a journal sheet to keep track of your food intake, or you can keep track an alternate way
  • There will be a Facebook page set up only for Challenge Winter 2014 Members.  Let’s encourage each other!
  • We are focusing on being healthy, not the number on a scale.  HOWEVER, many times weight loss is necessary for some to be healthy.  If you want additional help with this (for example, counting calories) please contact me.  Even though we’ll be working hard on this Challenge, if your goal is weight loss, it is totally possible to lose little to no weight on this challenge (we’ll discuss this in a later post).
  • Turn in Points. Each week, you’ll email me your total points for that week.
  • Help and Honesty!  This challenge requires each individual to be completely honest and take no short-cuts when calculating points.  Please don’t give up your integrity for the sake of a few points! If you need help calculating your points, I’m here for you.
  • Prizes will be given to the top three people who have the most total weekly points!

Here’s an example of the point sheets (click on it to see it larger):

Example page 2014You may notice this time around we have “bonus points.”  Exciting times, I tell you, exciting times!  Each week you’ll have a chance to earn a few extra points by doing things like posting a goal on our Facebook page, or memorizing a Bible verse.  We’re kickin’ it up a notch!

Again if you’d like to join, email me as soon as possible at trytrytryathlete@gmail.com as soon as possible.  I’ll send you your info packet.  READ IT ALL!  Every line!  Pretty please.

So excited to get this party started!  Come on and join the fun.  It just might change your life.

Fall Challenge Winner

I’m excited to have a guest blogger, Sara Y, today.  She was the winner of our last Health and Habits Challenge!  She not only got going on some great healthy habits, but won a Subway Card, a Fitness Card, and a Massage! There’s a new Challenge starting January 6…stay tuned…we’d love to have you!  Thank you, Sara, for your insights!

I signed DSC_2209up for this challenge as a way to help me improve my eating habits, and try to be more healthy.

Day 1 of the challenge was, well, a challenge. Getting all those fruits and veggies in was a challenge the first couple days, until I read in the forum that some participants were making green smoothies. I bought the ingredients to make one, and tried it the next day. Hmm – I have to say it wasn’t bad, but not quite as sweet as I was hoping. Day 2 of smoothie making was a little better, but still not impressed. Advice given to me from someone who makes smoothies regularly was “drink the smoothie within 1 hour of making it.” This was probably the best advice for me. Instead of making 2 days worth at a time and keeping in the fridge, I made 1 each morning before work. I loved that having a smoothie for breakfast every morning filled me up, and also helped me get my fruits and a veggie serving for the day. It is so much easier to eat healthy all day long when the day starts out right.

I love water, so making sure that I drank most of my water before 3pm was the biggest focus.

I have kids that love sweets – so I had to keep things in the house for them to eat. I bought sweets that wouldn’t tempt me, and didn’t have a problem leaving them alone.

It was hard to pass on the sweets the first little while, but after about a week of passing on the sweets, I found it empowering to know that I COULD pass on them, and I really didn’t even miss them.

Carey was nice and allowed 100 calories of sweets per day, so there were a few times when I would have a small bite of something because, let’s admit – I am human, and love sweets.

I liked the accountability partner or team mate communication that was encouraged daily. It certainly helps to have someone you know you have to answer to.

Overall, I learned that I can be healthy, as we all can, if we set our minds to it. Everyone has a bad day, but the phrase “tomorrow is a new day” kept me going! – don’t worry about what you did or didn’t do yesterday, wake up in the morning with a positive attitude and start the new day!

Thanks, Carey, for all your time in putting this challenge together and encouraging everyone along the way! I look forward to the next challenge!

Thank you to OC Physical Therapy, Robin’s School of Dance, Cypress Massage, and Hair on Hickory for the generous donations to our Challenge winners!

Fish Oil

Are you taking fish oil or another omega-3 supplement?

Why not?  Oh, I see, you’re eating fish at least 2 times a week.  A good fatty fish with no mercury.  And you’re not frying it, right? You’re also supplementing with walnuts and almonds? Well then, you’re excluded.  If you think you’re getting enough.

Everyone else, may I suggest you jump on board?

Fish oil is a great “brain food.”  It can help with depression, Alzheimer’s and other disorders. Often it’s used to give you a happier heart.  It can lower blood pressure and reduce cholesterol.

It can help with painful periods for women. Pain and swelling.  Eye problems. Diabetes and asthma.  The list goes on.

My friend’s son has seen improvement in his ADD.  His teachers can see a difference in just 2 weeks of taking it daily.

I take it for my dry eyes.  Guess what?  I’ve been told that everything gets drier as you age.  Thank you 40.  Twice in 6 months I went to the eye doctor because my contact flipped and was lost in eye cyber-space somewhere.  The eye doctor suggested fish oil.  I can definitely tell the difference.

What prompted this post?  I’ve been forgetting to take it and my eyes have gotten drier.  So a filled up a weekly pill box so I won’t forget!

Give it a try.  But remember, always consult your physician.  You don’t want it to interact with anything else your taking, or adversely effect any condition you may have.

Have trouble with fishy aftertaste?  Remember to always buy quality!  Make it worth your time and effort.  Your body will thank you.

Resources: WebMD;  American Heart Association