Tag Archives: running

God at Work

Standard
God at Work

Once again, I am floored by God’s perfect timing, and moved to tears by His awesome power.

So about the change I was feeling the need to make yesterday… I kept hearing God’s voice, but I wasn’t sure what it was saying. I kept making tiny changes to my whole day- breakfast, dinner, my clothing, the way I brushed my teeth, the foot I put a sock on first, and any other quirky little thing you could imagine.

Usually, I do my 2-3 mile run in the evenings, when it’s cooler, the sun is just setting, and it’s slightly less humid… Well, I was being told to change something. So I went online and found a running club in the area, and I decided to meet up with them to run 3 miles this morning… at 5:00am! I am not in the habit of being a morning person, so it took 2 alarms to get me out of bed. I haven’t been putting in much mileage recently either, but I got dressed, inhaled some yogurt, grabbed my water bottle and run tracker and headed off to meet the group.

It was a good run. I kept up with the leader of the group through the first mile and change, but then sort of started to get wheezy, what with the rain, humidity, and my mild case of asthma… So one of the other runners, Jan kept me company. It was just the two of us, until we met back up with the leader, Amila, around the 3 mile mark. We had talked about how we ended up down here in the area, and the subject came up that Amila was a military spouse as well. The more we talked, I started to piece things together until I realized that our husbands were not only in the same unit, they were working together at that very minute!

WOW! something as small as altering the time I go running opened up a door for a new friend with so much in common, and I never would have met her otherwise! Praise God for speaking to me in a way I could understand and using a common ground, like running, to connect me with someone who will understand exactly what I’m going through when we don’t have our husbands to lean on for comfort and support. God was telling me to move, literally! He told me to get up and go run, and embrace what would come of it! I can’t wait to see what else He has in store.

If that’s not proof that God is living and active, I’m not sure what is.

Me at a track meet in high school… I ran distance so I had a lot of spare time between events.

Adjustment Period

Standard

So after having gone lax in my daily workouts this past inspired 6 weeks of cardio and strength training have really shaken me up a bit. I found that in the first couple weeks, I was feeling super tired after a workout. I typically wake up before 8 am but I was sleeping till almost 10! Not only that, but in addition to the boost in exercise, I also revamped my diet, cutting out lots of sugar and unnecessary calories, and upping my vegetable and lean protein intake. I started cooking with more natural metabolism boosters as well, such as cayenne pepper, lots of garlic (my favorite) and drinking green tea with ginseng. The results were impressive. The key is not to give up, because you will begin to notice changes in your body and mood, but you won’t get the full effect if you give up too soon. Here are some of the awkward changes I noticed in the first couple weeks of my workout/diet:

1.) Changes in sleep- my body needed more rest to help my muscles recover

2.) Changes in water intake- I was constantly thirsty; my body needed water to rehydrate and flush my muscles of lactic acid

3.) Changes in skin- the first couple weeks, I noticed my skin got more oily; I assure you this is natural, as my body was trying to rid itself of toxins and get used to the various hormones and nutrients it was experiencing. It evens out later.

4.) Changes in regularity- For the sake of tact, let’s just say my change in activity level affected EVERY aspect of my health.

5.) Changes in cycle- (ladies, this is mostly for you) When you become more active, again, it affects EVERY aspect of your health. This like everything else balances out later.

6.) Changes in mood- I felt generally better about myself; the boost of endorphins from working out improved my mood and kept me from missing my husband too much. Plus, knowing that I was doing something good for my body made me feel more confident.

Like I said these changes are awkward at first, and they may freak you out if you go from “couch potato” to “athlete” in a short amount of time. But let me share with you what I gained in the process:

1.) More restful sleep- I was legitimately fatigued at the end of the day, and I found myself getting more restful sleep each night, waking up refreshed and ready to take on the day.

2.) In drinking up to 128 oz of water each day, I was in the bathroom a lot at first, but now, my body uses the water. My kidneys are flushed, and my skin looks a lot more healthy, and isn’t its typical over-dry, or to the other extreme, oily looking- just healthy.

3.) Like I mentioned earlier, my skin was crazy for the first couple weeks, but as your body detoxified, you skin clears up and starts to look more healthy than before. YAY!

4.) Again, for the sake of tact, being active gets EVERYTHING moving the way it should.

5.) All of your bodily functions become more regular; the extra intake of water helps a lot- after all, your body needs it for most of your bodily processes/functions.

6.) I feel fantastic. I’ve lost 10 pounds of body fat, and I’ve gained quite a bit of muscle. I’m a lean, mean, running machine. Physical fitness is SO beneficial. I strongly encourage you to engage in a regular routine, if you do not already

After all, we’re only given this one body, and seeing as it serves as a temple for the Holy Spirit, I feel we should care for it to the best of our ability.

Stresses and Coping Mechanisms

Standard
Stresses and Coping Mechanisms

“She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks” Proverbs 31:17

As is typical in my life, there are quite a few loose ends that need to be tied up, what with the house, my remaining “get it done while my husband is gone” projects, and so on and so forth. So with all that on my plate plus the “stress” (positive stress, I’d like to specify) of preparing for my husband’s return and getting back into the swing of his daily “wake up at 4 am” routine had me a little bit tightly strung. What I’ve found is that physical activity helps this a lot.

When I was in high school, I was always doing some kind of athletic something, whether it be track, volleyball, or basketball. As I crept ever closer to my high school graduation, I realized my true passion lied in music, so I took some of my focus off sports and placed it on performance. Well, I’m proud to say that over the past 3 or 4 weeks, I have gotten back in touch with my athletic side. And I’m proud to say that I can squat over 150 lbs (comfortably, I mean, If I wanted He-man legs, I’d do more, but I’m just toning here…) and I am building my mileage back up after taking quite a bit of time off from running due to knee injuries (adding a glucosamine/chondroitin supplement helped too)

What I’ve realized in all of my time spent getting in touch with my somewhat masculine side is that God definitely meant for us to be active beings. I mean, think about all of the intricate bits and pieces and parts that have to work together harmoniously even for something as simple as walking?! It’s profound! We take so much for granted as we sit on the couch eating potato chips that we fail to accept the gift of motion God has given those of us with able bodies! God is present in every aspect of our lives and I see him in nature when I go on trail runs, I see him in the beauty and wonder of creation in me, and I see him in the intricate design that so seamlessly ties us all together, in mind, body and spirit. Praise God!

That being said, I’ve found that physical exercise is a wonderful stress coping mechanism and I’d like to share with you my work out plan, for motivational purposes 🙂

Monday: Aerobic workout/ yoga

Asics womens GT2140- I bought these shoes a couple of months ago and just really started breaking them in and I LOVE them 🙂

Tuesday: 3 10 minute miles/ weight training lower body

Wednesday: 1 mile warm up/ weight training upper body/ 2 miles

Thursday: 4-6 miles (long, slow distance run)

Friday: 1 mile run (8 minutes was my goal this week)/ weight training core/ 1 mile cool down

Saturday: Yoga/ 2 miles

Sunday: Rest/recover

So far, this plan of action has been helping to get me back in shape but also keep in mind that properly fueling your body before and after exercise is just as important as working out itself. I eat a lot of high protein/ low-fat foods, such as fish, and chicken, and I limit my carb intake (this is my biggest food struggle, because I love, love, LOVE pastas, cookies, breads, etc.) and I always, always ALWAYS stay hydrated. I’ve actually noticed that on a typical day, I’ll drink up to 96 oz. of water! (that’s 3 32 oz. bottles) Not to mention the days I really break a sweat. 😉 I hope this helps motivate your fitness goals, as well as keeps me accountable to mine!

“Too Much *Clap Clap* Time On My Hands”

Standard

Naturally, with all this “free” time I have, I’ve made quite a few to-do lists, including, but not limited to:

1.) Mow the lawn (if it would go a single day without raining…)

2.) Finish all the laundry

3.) Organize/throw away all the extra clutter we should never have packed up and moved with us

4.) Decorate rooms

5.) Re-finish my writing desk/sewing table

6.) Exercise (mainly just remaining consistent)

7.) Apply for school

8.) Goodwill shopping

9.) Blog

10.) Make my way through Heroes

So That’s just the stuff I’ve been able to come up with today… I’m sure there is more that needs to be done around the house. But I’m limiting it to my top 10 for now. As you can see, I’ve already completed number 7. Huzzahs are in order.

My plan for today, before bell choir and chancel choir rehearsals, is to sort through the junk in the addition and put all the empty boxes in the attic for storage. There will more than likely be a follow-up blog on my progress, because I lack confidence in my ability to focus enough to get it all finished today. But, I’m being intentional about getting started, so that has to count for something. Here’s to a productive day and minimal procrastination!

Sunshine Award!

Standard

I’m back online ladies, and gents!

First, A couple of “housecleaning” items:

1.)  I (my blog) was nominated for a sunshine award by Easy-Going Organizer! What an honor! Please, check out her blog at http://easygoingorganizer.com/

The Sunshine Award comes with a few rules:

    • Include the award’s logo in a post or on your blog
    • Answer some questions about yourself
    • Nominate some other fabulous bloggers
    • Link your nominees to the post and comment on their blogs, letting them know they have been nominated
    • Share the love and link the person who nominated you!

The Questions:

Love or Money?

Love

High salary or job satisfaction?

Satisfaction

Favorite Book?

The Bible, The Great Gatsby, and The Book of Lost Things

Television character that you simply adore?

The whole cast of HIMYM and Charlie from LOST.

Favorite Music

Everything from Bach to Boston and all things in between! (with country and rap being lower on the list)

Favorite type of movie(comedy/romance/suspense/action/horror)

I love musicals! But I can’t say I’d ever turn down a good action/adventure flick

When I feel very sad or depressed I…..

Pray. God’s pretty good at taking my anxieties away. Exercise isn’t a bad remedy either. 🙂

Now for my nominees –

1.) Becoming a Proverbs 31 Woman at becomingaproverbs31woman.com – a beautiful woman, inside and out, and my inspiration for blogging.

2.) The Faux Martha at thefauxmartha.com– the name says it all- her recipes are fantastic and fresh, and her tips are fantastic!

3.) Relishing Life  at laurenbownds.wordpress.com – beautiful blog about growing in Christ and in a Christ-centered marriage.

4.) Someone Like Esther at brennammiles.wordpress.com– My friend from jr. college, and host of a fresh new blog about a newlywed’s walk with the Lord through life.

5.) Wifely Perfection at wifelyperfection.wordpress.com– Encouraging blog focused on the challenges of being a homemaker in the modern world, and breaking the stigma that goes with that. Very inspiring and great project ideas.

 

Next item of business:

I have decided to extend the giveaway of a signed copy of “Her Name is Grace” by Shidorr Myrick-Gayer until next month! (Mostly due to my lack of time to focus on anything amidst the big move) Friendly reminder of the entry rules:

  1. Like this blog and/or follow
  2. Leave a comment on the blog entitled, “Giveaway” with your name, and email address (for contact purposes in the event you win)
  3. Like Shidorr Myrick-Gayer on Facebook
I will announce the winner the first weekend in May. Please bear in mind that if you do not follow step 2, I have no way of contacting you or sending the book to you in the event that you win, in which case, I will conduct a second drawing.
Third item of business:
We are about to become homeowners. We officially close (tentatively) on the 30th of this month. As soon as I get all of our stuff out of boxes and put away in a moderately neat and orderly fashion, I will definitely post pictures for you all to see. Because we all know that the first thing a woman wants when she acquires a new home is to decorate and make it her own, so look forward to reading about my thrifty DIY projects around the new house! 🙂
Now that I’m back online, I’ll be playing catch up and filling you in on all the wonderful things I’ve seen and experienced through Christ in just the week of the move. Our God is alive and working in the world through his Holy Spirit and the people that surround you. God is good, and will be forever! AMEN!

HIS Hands and Feet

Standard

“She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy.” Proverbs 31:20

It’s been on my heart recently to be more actively involved in my faith than simply going to church on Sundays, and throwing my offering in the plate and calling it “faithful following.” Don’t get me wrong, regular church attendance is wonderful and so is tithing, but I desperately want to take my faith further from just believing to doing. So I decided to take action. There are two members of my church family that I know of who have been diagnosed with MS (Multiple Sclerosis). One woman is a pastor of the church, and the other woman is a devoted member of the church and military spouse. Having met and spoken to each of these women, I am amazed at the way God is working in their lives, and in the church through them. In their honor, I (and hopefully Mitch, if he isn’t on duty or in the field) will be participating in the annual 2012 Walk MS: Wilmington, NC. I am participating in honor of the two women in our church, as a part of the Military Spouse group from Trinity United Methodist Church. We have decided to use our hands and feet (mostly feet in the case of the 5k walk) to become “hands and feet” in the bigger concept of the body of Christ. (1 Corinthians 27:31)

I realized this morning as I was completing my registration that I have the power, through this blog, to reach out to all of you and gain your help in the fight against MS. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the disease, please click here to learn about MS and its effects.

I just ask that you take a spin past my team’s website, located here. Please, read a little bit about our team. From that site, you can join our team for the walk on April 21, 2012 in Wilmington, NC. You do not have to be present at the walk to make a donation to sponsor our team. Our goal is to raise $500 for the research and study to combat this destructive disease. So far, we are at a whopping $70 for our team, 14% of our goal. If you’re looking for a cause for which to be passionate, look in to this one. Your donations make a difference, regardless of their size. Seriously, even giving $1 to our team is giving $1 dollar to show those women of Trinity and people all over the world affected by MS that you’re aware of their struggle, and that you care and want to help. Another alternative would be to take a weeks offering that you would have given to the church and give it to this cause. Call it designated offering, if you will. 🙂

I thank all who do choose to support my husband and I, and more importantly, the rest of our team and the National MS Society in general. Please consider using your hands and feet to be a part of the bigger body of Christ.

Spring has Springded

Standard

“She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.” Proverbs 31:27

If ever there was a day for me to abstain from the bread of idleness, today is that day. I have such a to-do list that I feel a little guilty blogging :S

Anyway, I have lots lots lots to share!

First things first: There is a family (the Tallmans)  in my church that desperately needs your prayers; A young couple lost their 6 month old son to SIDS. Our hearts break for them and we know that only God can offer them the peace and comfort they need now. Please keep them in your prayers.

Second, and on a much lighter note, I have tiny baby plant sprouts!!! just the snapdragon, spearmint, and lavender, but hey, I’m simply proud of myself for not killing them off by now… I’m super excited to watch them grow and get heartier, and eventually in a couple of weeks transplant them! WOO!

Baby Sprouts! (Spearmint)

Third, our housing situation is progressing! We are moving forward with the paperwork, and as soon as we get the contract signed, we’ll send it to the bank and begin the closing process. Who said buying a home was difficult? Psh. I guess it’s helped a lot with my “non” stress that I give the whole thing up to God to handle every day. You know, I haven’t actually worried about any of it. Prayer is a beautiful thing. Faith is a freeing thing. And trust that God has everything under control is the most satisfying, comforting thing in the world. AMEN!

Fourth, I have a few recipes/pictures for you. Look for them….HERE!

Fifth, just an FYI- the Sunday news paper has awesome coupons!!! Every week there is a little leaflet of manufacturer’s coupons. To those of you new to couponing, manufacturer’s coups are accepted pretty much everywhere, not store specific. So with my coupons, I saved $2 on shampoo/conditioner, which made it $4, got BOGO pistachios, and BOGO 1/2 off boxes of frosted shredded wheat, and grape nuts cereal (I know, I know, my husband and I like old-people cereal) This week was a Sam’s run too, so the coupons that saved me $10 total was much appreciated in lieu of the higher grocery bill to begin with. People sometimes place a stigma on couponers, and I thank the show Extreme Couponing for helping to shatter that image. In my opinion, money in my pocket is never a bad thing, and being a good steward with my resources has enabled us to double our giving to the Church’s ministries! That’s hardly something to be ashamed of. It feels good to be smart with the resources God has blessed us with and it seems that the more we strive to be responsible and faithful in our spending, saving and giving, the more God just continues to bless us. I can’t even begin to describe to you how fortunate I feel, knowing that God is watching over us like that, and all we’re doing is being smart with his blessings. It’s a good thing.

Um… I think that’s about it for my sharing today… OOOOH one more thing, we met this amazing man at Shoe Carnival on Saturday. His name is Jimmy. He is an employee there, and coached track for many years; I was in shock and awe at the number of state championship placards on his office wall. Anyway, Jimmy took care of us; he taught Mitch some stretches to help with his hip and knee pain, and he outfitted us both in running shoes that corrected our strides. I love going into a business where the employees actually know what they’re doing and are eager to help. That alone has won the rest of my shoe-buying business for the remainder of my time here in Jacksonville, NC. I encourage anyone in the area to stop by Shoe Carnival and ask for Jimmy. Amazing guy, you won’t be sorry!

Oh- and I doubt there are any Jacksonville area readers, but if there are, my husband is a member of New River Harmony Men’s Chorus. They are a barbershop harmony style chorus, and there are various quartets within the group. And they’re putting on an Irish show that they (when I say they, I mean me too, because somehow I’ve ended up acting during one of the songs) have been preparing since we got here in October. It’s going to be a great show! Saturday March 31. See the NRH website for details!

New River Harmony Men's Chorus

Four Vets
L to R: Mitch, Bill, Mike, Ed

Da Capo (featured quartet)

And that concludes my post for today! Merry Monday, everyone!