30 days

Christmas break officially ended today!  School began, work began, routines began.  While it is fun to be on break, there is something to be said about routines too.  It makes the down time more appreciated in the least.  My workouts were few and far between during break, so I started 2 30 day challenges yesterday.  1 is a 30 day ab flattener found on the Cassey Ho website.  The other is a 30 day arm challenge found on shrinkingjeans.net  Completing both takes under 5 minutes, but it is a quick strengthening tool to add to my “what should be normal” workout routine.  😉  Check them out and let me know if you are doing them along with me.  🙂

“Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.” 3 John 1:2 (NIV)

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Cherries, Goals, Joseph and Josh McDowell

My daughter recently had a birthday, and I was lacking in taking pictures of the food, so I will just tell you about it.

Her theme was cherries, so I decided to include cherries in every part of the dinner.  We had cherry coke and cherry koolaid to drink, cherry glazed pork roast and cherry coke bbq ribs for our main course, cherry applesauce and a tossed salad with dried cherries for sides, cherry muffins and cherry jello topped of the dinner off.  Dessert included  cherry pie cookies and a chocolate cake shaped as decorated as a cherry.  Cherry heads, cherry tootsie pops and cherry twizzlers garnished the table as well.

I had a lot of fun making these dishes, most of the recipes were new.  And, she was excited that cherries touched everything!  I think her love for cherries is waning slightly…probably just because we were inundated with them for awhile.  😉

Anyone interested in the above recipes, shoot me a message!  🙂

In other news…I know I have not done well with blogging every day as was my goal.  Gallbladders and floods got in the way.  BUT, I have to say that God is drawing me closer.  Definitely giving me new questions to tackle and research, which means I am digging into His word more, which is always a good thing!  I am by no means digging in as much as I could/should, but I am getting there…only because of Him.  In my gallbladder craziness, both food and exercise went by the wayside, but it actually helped me get back to normal living.  I found that overtraining leads to overeating for me, because the calories you burn can’t compete with the incredible hunger.  So, I am mixing it up, doing different cardio and strength routines, not getting stuck in a rut and not getting crazy hungry.  ‘At first there was no difference, but I am happy to say that I am finally seeing some more definition in my body AND shed a couple pounds (just a couple, but I am ok with that for now).  😉

I recently finished UnDaunted.  It is a nonfiction book about Josh McDowell.  Josh McDowell is the author of More Than a Carpenter.  Josh learned to forgive the unforgivable, to trust the untrustable and to hope in something he didn’t quite believe all because of God.  The writing may not be the greatest, but the story is amazing!

My husband and I began watching Seasons of Gray~A Modern Day Joseph Story.  WOW!  So good!  We have to finish it tonight but I can already recommend it.

That is my eclectic post for the day!

🙂

Better Me

I have not been hard on myself lately in terms of diet and exercise.  There are perks to this…more sleep, more time, less stress, etc.  There are also downfalls…slight weight gain (though not too bad), less routine, less commitment, worse shape.  Most noted though is that since I used to wake up at dawn to work out, that was also when I would do my quiet time, devos, etc.  Those have been shortened lately, and while I continue to focus upward and spend time in the Word, I am not doing nearly what I could be…or should be.  Not entirely directly related…I feel guilty when I pig out…not just because I feel gross, but I feel like a glutton.  I do believe that it is sinful to overeat and/or not take care of your body (your temple) in the manner in which we are called.

Hence, I am coming back to my blog to keep me accountable in improving my time with my Savior, who deserves every millisecond of my life, as well as improving my diet/exercise (which as I said, is not terrible, but could use a little kick).  I am going to keep it simple.  I find it amusing that there are so many diets and eating plans that claim to be different, but truly are the same…or awfully similar.  Diet = a way of eating.  Diet does not = starving yourself.  Most diets ask for 80% or more effort.  Most diets encourage protein and veggies to fill up your plate.  The biggest difference in many diets are the issues or grains and dairy, but if you are following whichever diet you choose at 80%, then putting 20% of dairy or grains in your day or week is not big deal.  I digress…I did say I would keep it simple.

Each day I will come on and put up a verse, a scripture, a question or a brief commentary of something I have read in the Bible or from a devotional book or a study book.  Each day I will eat no more than 1500 calories…aiming for heavy proteins, veggies, water and green tea.  Each day I will do a minimum of 45 minutes of exercise.  Sundays will be my day off of workouts and calorie counting.  Anyone who would like to come along on this journey with me, just reply to my daily posts and we can get better together!  🙂  I am convicted to be better for Jesus (not that anything good is of me, it is all of Him) but I want to commit to being better for Him, for my family and for me.

Tidbits from daily life

Life has been a bit of a whirlwind since school has started, but here are a few things that have been happening:

* My husband and I are in a bible study with some of our friends, Sacred Marriage, and it is so refreshing to be in a room filled with people who are married and want to be married.  🙂

* Without babysitting 2 little ones, and now being in a routine with school, I have a lot more time to just be with the kids uninterrupted.

* In the craziness of work, higher education, school and kid schedules, date nights are wonderful! 🙂

* I began reading “Undaunted, The Josh McDowell Story” and while it is a difficult read so far, I have high hopes of it being a great book!

* I am looking forward to going to see “Unbroken” after Christmas.  If you have not read it yet…read it!!!!

* Minnie Driver may be the best actress ever…I am watching “Return to Zero” as I type and it is incredibly well made.  For those of you who don’t know about the movie, it is about a couple whose baby was stillborn.  It is based on a true story.  I haven’t seen this issue portrayed since ER did an episode on it.  They depicted it very well, also.  Amazingly, in the ER episode “Midnight” the situation was almost identical to mine…even down to the baby’s name.

* My kids ran their first mud race and it was awesome!!!!

That’s all the updates for now!

Enjoy the weekend!

FitBit!

I have recently been introduced to the FitBit.  It was a gift and it is super fun!

You all know I am a fitness/health guru.  I am constantly trying to find the best workouts, chiseling muscle routines, healthy eating plans, and diets.  Through all of this I have become a healthier person.  I no longer think that I will be prettier if I am a size negative zero.  I really only thought like that for a year a few years ago.  I now know that I have a 10-15 pound range and both ends are very healthy.  One end may be more muscle and one more thin, but both are ok.   I know what I need to do to be my healthiest, I know when I don’t do that, accept it and start new the next day.  I have plans on using my interest in these areas to become a personal trainer.

Enough of that ramble.

Even though I have come to this realization for me, I also know I need accountability so I don’t go crazy with laziness or gluttony.  😉  The FitBit is great for that.  It keeps track of everything!  I can track my calories burned and eaten, how much sleep I get and its quality, my activities and how many steps I take in a day.  I am currently around 13,000 steps a day.  🙂  You can also link up with friends and have a healthy health competition.

I highly recommend this for EVERYONE.  Such a great gift and tool and toy.  🙂

Check out their website.

http://www.fitbit.com

Sculpted Arms and Healthy Cereal

I am always looking for new workouts, healthy eating tips and things of the like.  I also know my body pretty well, so know my trouble areas (even if others try to make me feel good but saying there are none).  😉

My thighs and my triceps are my toughest areas to tone.  There are different times when they are more in shape than others, but I have a hard time getting that “cut” look if you will.  I finally found a pretty easy arm workout that may actually work.  I am beginning to see small signs that it may actually give me the look I want.  Sooo…I thought I would share.  Enjoy!

http://www.self.com/fitness/workouts/2008/11/sculpt-a-list-arms-fast#slide=1

I am also very interested in eating healthy, but often cave to the sugar monster.  Sadly once I cave it is difficult to recover.  Sugar is addictive to me…seriously.  blah!  I am a huge fan of cereal, though, but it needs to be treated as a dessert in my opinion.  There is a ton of sugar packed in those boxes.  I am also skeptical of protein cereals, because even those that claim to have a high protein content seem to have double the carbs.  I used to shy away from Kashi thinking it was just the new fad brand, but I am a new fan of their 7 Whole Grains Puffed Rice Cereal…low cal, no sugar, no flour.  Add a banana and some 30 calorie almond milk and you have a filling meal  that is pretty healthy.  🙂  And the 30 calorie almond milk is a winner to me…add cinnamon or vanilla and you have your own non-additive, non-sugar, tasty cereal maker.  I am also a fan of Special K Protein, because while the carbs are still higher than the grams of protein, they are the lowest that I have found.

That’s all for my random Thursday health and workout update.

🙂

unconditional

When I run on the elliptical in the morning I like to watch something to keep my mind off running.  😉  It is hard to find new things all the time, but I recently chose the movie Unconditional.  I really like it!  I love that one of the main characters is based on the life of a real life person.  This man changed the lives of so many kids.  I love kids!  So when a person puts his/her comforts on the line to change the lives of our future…well, it is a winning story for me and I highly recommend that you watch it!

Speaking of the elliptical…kind of…I was so good eating healthy since the summer and even through Christmas and New Years, but I got burned out of eating healthy and took a brief hiatus.  Amazing how all that progress can go away so quickly.  😦  Therefore… I am back to healthy starting today.  I had a healthy breakfast and a great run on the elliptical this morning.  I feel good and am actually ready to get back into the healthy routine.  As yummy as being unhealthy can be, my body really doesn’t feel good when I am unhealthy.  So I am ready to feel good again.  🙂

Random Health Stuff

I have another favorite inner thigh exercise:

http://tribesports.com/challenges/inner-thigh-advanced-20-each-side-for-2-weeks

“hurts so good”

🙂

 

I also have another favorite low calorie drink:

Special K Protein Water mix…only 30 calories per packet and is protein and yummy.  🙂

 

And my 6 year old still has her baby belly a little bit, but since we have been eating less processed foods…it is starting to go away.  I am not at all at all at all interested in how much she ways, she is a kid, but it was just an interesting note to our healthier eating.

 

Reflection, Perspective and New Starts

My body sure has been through a lot in the last decade…pregnancies, births, crazy weight loss, weight back to normal, weight past normal (:P), various tests the last few years to determine…finally…that my body reacts to yellow dye, potentially other dyes, and is intolerant to a smattering of foods like oatmeal and broccoli (both of which I actually like).  In the midst of all the craziness, my workouts have intensified, my time with God has jumped around and my perspective has changed.

My body weight and fat percentage are not where I want them…I desire to be healthier and to shed a few pounds while defining the muscle that is already there, but I am finally at the point where I am not going to dwell on it as much as I have in the past.  Wondering which mirror is the most accurate, missing sleep to squeeze in that last hour of the workout, or just obsessing about 5 or even 10 pounds.  If I am making healthy choices, the weight will come off in time.  If I am not eating like a football player and being a glutton, if my husband loves me and more importantly my Savior loves me, then there is not one reason to obsess.  If someone else judges me based on a few pounds, shame on them, and if I let that bother me, shame on me.  My priorities need to be on God first.  I am ashamed to say that there have been days where I stayed up late to workout and then fell asleep reading my Bible.

So I am making a few changes.  I am still going to be healthy and workout, because I enjoy working out and think people should take care of the bodies God has given to them.

My mornings will look a little like this:

  • Devotionals (a few pages of 2-3)
  • Prayer and journal time
  • online devotions
  • workout (currently I am doing an ab challenge, a squat challenge, elliptical, a 4 week program kind of and I just printed the Spartacus workout so we will see if I add that in…that one is only 3xs a week and the 4 week program is not everyday either)
  • Normal day of chasing children, teaching children, cleaning, cooking and household maintenance
  • depending on how much time I spent working out, possibly another workout before bed…but not too late.  😉

With all the craziness of food I am going to attempt to eat as clean as possible.  I know this needs to be a gradual switch, so I will do it the right way.

I am excited to have a better perspective, I am excited to be healthier, I am most excited to see where the Lord will lead me and my family.

Just a few Tuesday life thoughts  🙂

Weekly Update

Not much to report this week.  Since you have been on this journey with me you have known that this goal is taking a long time.  But it isn’t going the wrong direction, so that is good, right?  The whole build muscle and lose weight thing is hard for me to figure out.

No weight loss again this week….measurements all pretty much the same.

However, even though I have only been doing this no weighing myself everyday and trying to make healthier food choices instead of only calorie counting I feel a lot better.  I am keeping my calories in check, feeling full because of eating the right foods, working out a lot.  My clothes fit well and so I am HOPEFUL that soon my goal will be reached.  But I like this approach better instead of running to the scale  5 times a day and restricting calories so much all week that I gain it all back on my off days.  I am just going to try to be consistently healthy.  The last 2 days though, avoiding diet cola again and processed foods 80% of the time has me feeling so much better!  I hope I can keep this new mindset and approach…it is healthier for mind and body.

My goals remain the same…eat right, lower calories, workout 6 days a week, aiming for 5 pound loss minimum, 7 pound loss maximum.

Will keep you posted!