Hello! Whoa, what a whirlwind life has been lately and it's still going in full force. I want to do document this season of our lives right now - not necessarily because it is very interesting to others, rather because I want us to look back and see how God has poured out many blessings and extra doses of energy so that we can continue to push through. Life right now is very sweet....things are going quite well....just at a pace that neither of us wants to sustain forever. However, we are thankful that the Lord is proving that He can and will do "immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine" (Eph. 3:20) including when we need another boost of stamina to keep us in gear. ;)
I type this message from a hotel in Charlotte, NC where Josh and I arrived yesterday afternoon. We are in town for tonight's Kenny Chesney & Tim McGraw concert that will begin later this afternoon. Josh was sweet to schedule this trip as a surprise to me. The days leading up to this weekend have been so hectic that we worried the timing was wrong to leave town; we even considered selling the concert tickets to stay in town. The reason is because this isn't just any weekend - it is the last weekend before we move into a new home. We left town with boxes still to be packed up and moved. We arrived to Charlotte exhausted and drained. We agreed to come enjoy this trip and rest up, making every effort to forget about the work ahead of us this week with moving while also working our full-time jobs and continuing to strive for our health (which doesn't include the conveniences of drive-thrus, food delivery,and slacking on our fitness).
On top of that, Josh has been working third shift and many overtime hours. That pretty much means he puts me to bed each night and then goes into work while I sleep. Then I am at work when he is sleeping. It's been an adjustment to say the least since our schedules are completely opposite. However he is taking it like a champ and still being my awesome husband (pretty sure if the roles we reversed, I would not be so sweet).
Earlier this morning I visited the hotel gym on my own. You should know this is a pretty big deal for me, but in keeping with our recent efforts for overall health and well-being I made myself peel out of bed for at least a short workout of some cardio and strength training. Funny thing is that it is a little easier to do when my "reward" is hotel continental breakfast and fresh-brewed coffee waiting downstairs....I am a sucker for a real breakfast and someone else making my coffee. :)
I want to show you my view right now but am having problems getting the photo to upload in this post. So picture me in the chair with my feet propped up on the ottoman, with a bag of ice stretching over both my knees. I laughed at myself that this very same chair I had used just moments before for reverse push-ups is now being utilized for my rehab. Unfortunately I have known for quite some time that my knees and ankles give me pain and problems, which is the very reason I have quit working out many times before. I am still not sure the approach I will be taking if this continues. I am a wimp when it comes to pain, however I am also more mentally committed to overall well-being now than ever before. I just have to find the right balance between challenging myself in a way to grow stronger while also not causing damage.
My sweet husband took me a couple weeks ago to a running store where they performed an analysis of my running form, taking a video to show me how jacked up my ankles are. We purchased the overpriced shoes and inserts that will hopefully help stabilize my ankles. Right now I am not sure if it is helping or not so I will definitely give it more time. I joke (not at all in the make fun of way) to Josh that I probably needed braces on my legs (like Forrest Gump) when I was younger, but it might be too late for that now. To my surprise I am really enjoying the upper body strength training, which was the very thing I most feared when we began working out several weeks ago. I still can't do push-ups "man style" but I will get there eventually. Josh actually showed me how to do them using a staircase which has been my preferred method for now.
We are not doing a particular diet or fitness regimen; we are not counting calories or following a structured meal plan. Instead, we are combining cardio and whole body strength training for fitness and eating more wholesome foods such as lean meats, lots of veggies, fruits, and nuts (basically limiting processed/high-sodium foods). We still enjoy some indulgences (like yesterday was our cheat day and I am not even going to name what we ate). The coolest part is the changes in the way my body feels.....well, other than the soreness that is. ;) I am feeling more energetic and just a lighter feel (I am really not even talking less pounds so much as just more free and peppy). And now that I have been in this new way of health for a few weeks now, it's funny that when we have our cheat meals my body doesn't feel as great. I don't get sick or nauseous feeling, just feel more lethargic and fatigued...plus I can tell when we've consumed sodium (ahem...chips & salsa....cough, cough) because my fingers swell and I just feel weighed down.
This is obviously just the beginning of many new things in my life. I am certainly no expert - just a simple girl trying to make good lifestyle choices that will have long term effects. My encouragement to you (and the lesson for myself that I'm still learning) is to get back to the basics and simplify by shedding the excess. This can be the junk we put in our bodies as well as the junk we find stuffed in closets and drawers when it's time to move out. Both situations really are similar because if we protect our bodies and homes from the things that cause them harm and clutter, we can focus on what makes them thrive. I know all of this, yet I still struggle with committing to this very beneficial lesson. It helps to remember that every little bit makes a difference. The healthy meal with a short workout is a step toward my goal, just as cleaning out one drawer. I need to not view life as all-or-none and rather see it as every good process is letting me step closer to my ultimate goals. Feel free to hold me accountable to this - I need all the help I can get! :)