4.17.2018

Running Streak day 2300 and beyond

If we are friends on facebook or twitter you may have seen this yesterday....


Yes! Yesterday was day 2300 of my running streak and a day worth blogging about. I shared a bit of my story on social media but kept it short and sweet. But honestly, there is so much more!

2300 days of running at least a mile a day. Running outside, running inside, running in sun, running in rain, running on streets, running on paths, running on the beach, running in airports, running in Texas, running in Illinois, running in Nebraska, running in California, running in Hawaii. I have also run in Spain but unfortunately, that was pre-streak days so does not count much today but that was a fun run. I kinda got lost. Kinda. I did not have to resort to my GPS map to guide me home but almost had to. But shhh....I don't think I told my mom I almost got lost in Spain.

Those 2300 days also represent fast days, slow days, so-so days, painful days, running on pure joy days, and I don't wanna days. Yes, there have been I don't wanna days...more than I would like to admit but when it got down to it, when I looked at my reason for not running it did not seem to be the reason I would like to have to use every time I said I ran every day until x happened. That x needs to be a good reason. Not a lazy, pathetic reason. Not a weak mind reason. And I am thankful for this experience as it set me up to be a better support for my daughter when she recently struggled with a similar feeling as it relates to horseback riding. Y'all, whatever sport you choose, there are going to be bad days. Hey, there are bad days in life! We just need to learn to roll....or run....or ride....or JUMP with them!

And don't forget to reward yourself for your achievements and you know what, I need to set up a reward system for darling! Her sport is hard! I just need to put one foot in front of the other. She is a heels down, toes up, leg on, close the hip angle, stay focused, type of sport. PHEW! I wonder if she knows how proud I am of her? I will need to tell her....again...and again, and again, and again.

Celebrate those milestones!

I set up just a thing for myself about 100 days ago. For every 100 day increment in my streak, I get to treat myself to something! My idea was a new running outfit. Bondi Band has a new Bondi Wear line with awesome stuff and hey, I do like to match and maybe look a bit stylish when I workout. I am in my workout gear a good chunk of each day so it matters. By the way, you can get 10% off when you shop at Bondi Band with my friends and family coupon code EGFITNESS. You can also get a 20% discount at SOS Rehydrate for an amazing electrolyte drink with the some code - EGFITNESS. But I am getting distracted in telling my story. Hey! I love sharing deals and products I love! If you have any affiliate links that don't compete with mine (sorry, no competition zone) enter them in the comments below, okay? I would love to support you if it is something I could use! And if I can't, maybe one of my readers can!

Anyhow, my 2300 day treat ended up not being a new outfit but this....


Yes! A hula hoop! It is a weighted hula hoop and the segments can be moved around to make it easy, medium, or hard in effort levels. And y'all, I tried a couple workouts yesterday and it made me sweat! Who knew hula hooping workouts could be hard! And who knew it would work your arms and shoulders! I have really tight stressed out shoulders so some of the moves really worked, and stretched, those areas and this is a good thing to return to time after time. Did anyone else sing time after time? If you did you may also like this song that popped up when I was running today.

Run like James Bond!


I really do need to "run" now and get to work but I have one final thing I want to share. When I run before work near the office I don't get to shower. There is no hot water. That is a story for another day but I am not a cold shower type of gal. I have used athletic wipes more than once in the past but found these that are biodegradable (win!) and have peppermint and tea tree oil in them (another win!). There is also one with lavender oil! No affiliate link for these but I found them on Amazon and just wanted to share.


Have a great day!

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for an amazing 4.2 mile run today --- outside in the wind! 

Daily Bible Verse: These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. ~ John 15:11

4.11.2018

Virtual Run across Alaska

When you are running and racing on a budget sometimes you need to get creative to keep the momentum going.

One thing that has motivated me over the years is virtual races --- some I have paid for, some where comped, some were free for all, and some I created on my own. Like my current mission - running across Alaska for my buddy.

Through the I Run 4 Michael program I signed up to be a runner for someone who signed up for a runner. It is a mutual thing. A runner signs up, a buddy signs up, and you are eventually matched. Buddies are matched FAST! Runners, you gotta wait but hey, you are used to training and waiting for results so this is no different.

On July 27, 2014 I was matched with my beyond amazing buddy, Toby. He has Down syndrome and is very close in age to darling daughter. A match made in Heaven! Since then, I have grown to know and love him more along with his mom, family, younger brother, and his brother's runner. Both Toby and his younger brother have Down syndrome and were adopted! How cool is that?! Seriously, this is way cool!

I try to keep things fun and different with my running for Toby. When we were first matched I did more road races as it was in the budget but things have changed so now I try to do things with little to no budget. The virtual runs I set up through My Virtual Mission are a cool addition! I have run from Hawaii to Nebraska, Hadrian's Wall, Land's End to John o'Groats, and now across Alaska for Toby! Some have medals (if they are organized by My Virtual Mission and have a fee) and some don't but that is okay.

One thing I have realized in my current Alaska mission is this one is harder with less landmarks and a lot of icy conditions. It makes sharing cool updates and information harder. When I ran from Hawaii to Nebraska that was different. I was able to share more about landmarks. Now I feel I am running through frozen nothingness but still, it is something to share.

I am 439.2 miles into my 719.2 mile mission, a mission that started 167 days ago on October 25, 2017. Out of all the missions I have done for Toby, this is the first where I started and continue to be ahead of the ball in mileage and that is really cool! I was also kind to  myself and gave myself 473 days to complete this mission which means I was expecting to average 1.52 miles a day. A reasonable and realistic goal back in October when just a mile took all my heart and soul to complete. As of now I am averaging 2.63 miles a day. May that average increase over the next 279.9 miles!!!

This is also the first mission I did with a fundraising goal but to be honest, I have not been sharing or asking for support....until today. All funds raised will go to Catholic Charities and I appreciate your support. I have to manage this through my Paypal account because it was not one of the charities linked through the My Virtual Mission website. The linked causes were not near and dear to my heart...just being honest.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for virtual runs and the help of volunteers.

Daily Bible Verse: Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. ~ Philippians 3:13-14

4.09.2018

Hello Smoothie! - Getting back into the protein powder groove

Fitness is a journey, like all else in life, and recently I have been not drinking the daily protein shakes like I was for the bulk of the 2017. To be honest, it was financially motivated but I do feel not drinking the shake has had another cost factors. 

My overall health and energy. As odd as it seems, that almost daily protein shake shapes my food choices all day as it gets my nutrition on track....and perhaps prevents me from snacking mindlessly as I feel famished. 

The benefits of a protein shake is that they can help fuel your body and replenish muscle stores after a workout. The thing is, if you load that protein shake with add on's, or drink it at the wrong times, it can also lead to weight gain. It all comes down to the basics - calories in should not exceed calories out as it will result in weight gain no matter what you are eating or drinking. And some people may be tempted to drink their protein drink alongside a meal doubling up their meal intake without realizing it. This is not good.

And this is not, or has not been, my mode of operation. Initially my shake was to replace afternoon snacking but in time I realized this was not ideal as I could be mindlessly snacking throughout the day. It kept me from not snacking during food prep for dinner and the next day lunches but there is a better way...at least for me...and I think for many depending on your fitness routine.

I am a morning fitness gal. I start my day with a workout; therefore, starting my day with a protein shake makes sense. It is my first meal of the day...a meal that comes after working out. The best time for my body, and most importantly my muscles, to benefit from the protein shake. And yes, I add some fruit and maybe some instant coffee to my shake to liven it up. It makes it a good, wholesome breakfast.

I also go for vegan shakes.

I want a non-dairy choice and I love that the vegan shakes often increase the veggies in the shakes and this means a lot to me. The added veggies add fiber which can aid in digestion. A win-win to me when compared to just whey based powders that will irritate my stomach and give me little in addition to protein. I am looking for a wholesome breakfast that is easy to eat, or shall I say, drink on the go. 

And it sets a great example as darling daughter models what she sees and today wanted a shake for breakfast. She drinks one formulated for kids and added a banana for creaminess and blueberries to hers today. This is a much better choice than a carb-based breakfast. I am glad she is nourishing her body well because she is growing and is quite active with her equestrian sport and cross training with me. Yep, she rides three days a week and now cross trains twice a week!

Gotta love support and having a workout buddy!

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for an affordable vegan shake choice. 

Daily Bible Verse: And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food. ~ Genesis 1:29

4.05.2018

March 2018 Training Report

Any thing you do in life is worth working for but that also means, what you get out of anything in life is dependent on what you put into it.

March was an amazing month. A hard month, but an amazing month.

March was Lent and I was focusing on a lot beyond physical training. I was focused on my spiritual life and the relationships around me. I would love to say all is AMAZING but it wasn't but yes, March was amazing.

Why?

The last quarter of last year sucked. I felt like a ton of bricks. Then Christmas came and I received the gift of the lead falling off my legs and being able to run again without pain and overwhelming sadness. The veil of depression was lifting but it was still a struggle. I had many low mileage days and that is okay. At least I was running. I was moving forward.

The end of Lent, those last two weeks of March, had a similar unveiling. My running mojo was improving more. Running was becoming fun again. I was logging more miles and I thank God for this gift. But I also realize I needed to be able to see and recognize the gift in order to accept it, to benefit from it.

I also spent March reading The Love Dare and have now started the parent version of the same book. It is opening my eyes to things I already knew but maybe did not fully embrace. Love is a choice. I can't make people love me or act in lovable ways but I can choose love.

All my life I have struggled with wanting to be accepted, to feel lovable, to feel like I am doing good. I thrived on affirmation from others.

This left me in a not so good place and now I see it is kinda a selfish way of living. Way too much focus on me and what I get in return. I needed to learn to love even the unlovable. I needed to learn to love even when I was not being praised. YIKES! That "love your enemy" was hitting home....not that I am calling those around me enemies but you get the point.

And for the first time that I can ever remember, when I was being told off, brought down, and in the face of pretty much being told "you suck", I remained calm and peaceful in God's love....and was mocked for it....but inside I was doing the biggest happy dance ever! I was not being provoked to be mean and unloving. I was being love.

I could not get to this point without all the up's and down's in my life and those training/running hurdles, they helped me get to this point. If you never experience the down, how can you fully appreciate the up?

Darling daughter is learning a similar lesson in her riding right now. I am glad I had the experience of running ruts and struggles to relate to her. To have empathy. To help her through the rough patch and hearing her happy voice after a good lesson (kinda like a good run for me) was the best thing in the world!

Seriously.

It was better than winning the race!

And to really feel that, to appreciate that, I need to embrace the struggles in my life and invest in myself, in personal development, and to focus on my actions...not theirs. Y'all, you can't make anyone or anything in the world go the way you think it should. Sorry, you can't. But you can control how you act, how you train, what you do. Do that. It matters. It will bring you the calm in the storm you may need...sometimes more often than you think.

So by embracing the training storm, checking in and looking at what I am doing, looking at my stats, beginning to record how the running is making me feel each day, adding mood to miles, I was able to crank up my training the second half of March and that is pretty cool!



I ended up with 100 running miles and 29 hours of working out. I do well emotionally with an hour a day of working out and I was pretty close to that with just over 56 minutes a day. That is exciting news!

My 2018 goal is 1,170 miles. I am at 254 miles with 85 in January and 69 in February. That makes 100 this month even more exciting! The best month this year...even if not the best in my life. And I need to average just under 102 miles a month for the rest of the year to hit my goal. That seems completely doable, doesn't it?!

By the end of March I also completed 18 new workouts! I had 10 by the end of February so once again, I am happy with my progress. My goal is 70 in 2018 so to achieve this I need to do about 6 new workouts a month. Again, I can do this! I just need to find a new program and get going. Ready, set, sweat!

With more running time it may be a struggle but I am up for the challenge. After all, you get out of life what you put into life. You can't expect to be better, do better, live better if you aren't willing to put in the work and change yourself. I am ready to continue to grow, how about you?

I believe April will be another AMAZING month and I am excited to hit running streak day 2300 because for each 100 day mark, I get to treat myself to a running and working out treat...maybe a treat from BondiBand - you can get 10% off your BondiBand purchase with EGFITNESS. :)

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for a great March! And for personal growth due to the grace of God.

Daily Bible Verse: So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. ~ Isaiah 41:10

P.S. Get 20% off of SOS, the hydration I love, with coupon code EGFITNESS

3.23.2018

Let Criticism Motivate You

In the final days of Lent I am struggling - emotionally and spiritually. As much as I feel God's presence all around me, I am stumbling. I want to be a peaceful person but yet the frustrations of life are leaving me stressed to the point of breaking. My challenge - to remain calm and focused when I am being criticized and blamed, when I am being asked to behave in ways that the person is not even demonstrating. I truly do believe in leading by example and not asking someone to do something if you are not willing to hold yourself to the same standards. I also believe we are all capable of making mistakes, myself included, and to suck it up, take responsibility for your own actions, and not blame someone for your own mistakes or misbehavior. To be forgiving. To be charitable. To be merciful.

But I do flop at times. I know I do not want to yell and shouldn't yell, but when pushed....especially with someone yelling at me, insulting me, criticizing me, blaming me....it is hard to not break and yell. I don't want to, yet I do. It is not someone else's fault I yelled. Yes, they may have stressed me to the point of breaking but ultimately, I am the one who yelled. It is my fault. Period.
Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. ~ Matthew 26:41
I am open to hearing the point of view of others but some things I won't budge on - my faith and my self-care. It is not selfish to stick to these two pillars of who I am. I need God and I need to take care of myself. My mental health needs it. God wants me to take care of myself. Running and cross training bring me peace. Sometimes that peace is robbed from me way to quickly but once again, I am working on that and it is a daily struggle. Don't judge me for my failures and I won't judge you.
You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. ~ Matthew 7:5
But we all judge at times, don't we? Even if we don't mean to. We all have standards we expect others to live up to and it can be hard when those standards aren't being met. There are some rules of interacting with others that we feel all society should adhere to as we expect drivers on the road to adhere to driving standards, right?

It is even harder when we ourselves are being judged. It is hard to not get defensive especially when the perceptions are wrong or you are being wrongly judged, wrongly criticized. Yes, that happens. And when it does, you have a choice. I have a choice. Let it bring you down and bring out the worst in you (which I always despise it when that happens as I expect better from myself) or let it motivate you to stick to your guns and moral principles, your faith, your health, your peace of mind.

I say go for option two.

Choose to take that criticism and let it propel you forward. Tell me my bible reading and running is detracting from my ability to take care of you, myself, and others and I will become more determined than ever to read my bible daily and work out at 110% effort. It is not selfish, moms, to take care of yourself. It is not selfish, wives, to take care of yourself. You are worthy of love and the ability to give love starts with loving yourself, loving yourself enough to stand up for your right to take care of yourself - emotionally, spiritually, and physically. Loving yourself enough to have the courage to follow God's will.
Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body. ~ 1 Corinthians 6:19-20
And to wrap this post up, I want to share one more quote and nope, this one is not a bible verse.
Once you realize that you are a human being with a body and soul, it should change how you use your body. What you do with your body, you do with your soul. ~ Jackie Francois 
Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for God's love, mercy and forgiveness especially when I feel like a grumbling Israelite crossing the desert in the times of Exodus. 

Daily Bible Verse (yup, one more): For no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the church. ~ Ephesians 5:29 

3.22.2018

A Healthier Home: moving away from chemicals

I work in a non-profit committed to protecting our oceans and being as "green" as possible is a not only a part of my work life but my home life. I am not perfect. I am a work in progress and recently I have started tackling one area of greening up my home that I thought was out of my budget - less chemicals for cleaning the house and on my family's body. And yes, this post contains affiliate links but I am sharing products that I use and love.

Just like a new fitness program and diet, greening up your home does not need to happen all at once. Baby steps matter so pick a place and start there. In fact, baby step lead to stronger continuous growth.

My first step was eliminating traditional household cleaners and moving to vinegar, water, and baking soda. A lot can be done with these simple ingredients and to this day I am convinced baking soda makes the tub shinier than any traditional cleaner I ever used in the past....and no yucky fumes is a plus.

But even though I was cleaning without chemicals, chemicals were still going into the air with air fragrances as I do love a awesome smelling house. Don't you?

My next step was to purchase essential oils and a diffuser and this small investment is transforming my life in so many ways. Now I have a diffuser in both bedrooms, the bathroom, the kitchen, and even one at work! I like the ones that have pretty lights and let you choose between continuous or intermittent puffs.


I always have at least one diffusing away and over the past 8-10 months, I have collected an amazing collection of oils. I have single oils and blends and some of my favorite blends are for breathing easy, headache relief, stress relief, and a good night's sleep. My single oils range from orange, to lemon, to lavender, to eucalyptus, to patchouli, to frankincense, and more. I even have some clove and cedar wood! Everything has a purpose and a reason that now goes way beyond just diffusing.

I invested in a great book on essential oils in the home that contains a host of "recipes" for cleaning products and more. I invested in glass bottles to hold my blends in and have a kitchen counter blend, bathroom sanitizer blend, linen spray for the beds, and a sports cleaner for my treadmill and ironically, the blend is great for cleaning the pet cages. Bunnies can make some good stink!

I used the book I bought for inspiration but have added my own twist and inventions. With the purchase of some castille soap, I have created my own toilet cleaner that dilutes the soap with water and adds in some essential oils, whatever scent I desire when I make up some, and it is kept by the toilet for those regular deeper cleanings and let me tell you, that toilet bowl shines!


Is that the end? Nope!

I was still using dryer sheets and it bugged me with the physical waste and chemicals. I now own dryer balls you can reuse and add oils if you want a scent. They are taking some getting used to but make a huge impact. My drying times are shorter and they do work. I just need to be careful not to over dry and create a lot of static clean. It is a timing thing I need to get used to. And each ball can be used hundreds of times! So that scary first investment does work itself out in the end especially when you factor in shorter dryer times. Win-Win!


But everything I do and use is not essential oils or homemade. I have transitioned the family to natural toothpastes and soaps. I do love the products from Elk River Soaps and we keep bath bombs in stock, love their handmade soap, and even tried their shampoo and conditioner for a trial run. I am going to get more for when we travel as I love the cans they come in.


I am in the process of making the final transition with shampoo, deodorant, and laundry detergent. And I even now have an all natural hand sanitizer on my desk at work for helping combat office germs.

FYI: The products we buy for the horse darling daughter rides are also all natural. And did you know you can make your own mosquito repellant? I do and it works. I may still get some bites here and there but honestly, that can happen with the nasty chemical repellant too as I am a mosquito buffet. I am only mentioning that here because I keep some homemade mosquito repellant at the stables for me when those pesky mosquitos are hunting me down.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for the opportunity to share products I love that can keep your home and life greener and chemical free.

Daily Bible Verse: But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. ~ 1 Timothy 5:8

3.15.2018

Tracking progress & a plea for help

It is mid-March. How on Earth did that happen? That seems to be the standard exclamation from me these days as time is rushing by way too fast. With things speeding by at the speed of light it got me wondering, how am I doing in regards to my March training goals?

Some days I feel I am doing okay, other days I feel I am flopping. But with any plan in life, without metrics to truly look at, how do you know how you are doing?

So let's recap my March goals. I need to get to 101.6 miles a month average for the rest of the year to nail my 2018 mileage goal. I am also striving for 70 new cross training workouts. I am at 13 new workouts and 40 miles this month. OUCH!

If you put it into perspective, in February I ran 69 miles so I do feel I am up'ing my running game from an average of 2.46 miles a day to 2.67 miles a day so far this month. I need to do more but I am also aware of the benefits of a gradual build-up so I am happy. Sorta. At least I am on the right track. In February I did 3 new workouts and I have done 3 new so far this month. Again, I am on the right track. That is good. But I want more.

My biggest hurdle is how and when. Time is flying by in so many areas of my life and it seems I have so little time. My go to plan to get my workouts in was to wake up earlier. Just get up and move. I am struggling big time with that. My alarm goes off but I don't get moving. It takes me at least 30 minutes from alarm ringing to moving to work. If I adjust the alarm to just sleep that extra 30, it still takes 30. That means right now my alarm is set for 3 am most days. Y'all, that is brutally tough! But necessary to get it all in as afternoons are pretty much full of darling daughter's activities, meal prep, and just home maintenance. I need more time. I need something!

Am I looking to do too much? Are my expectations too high?

These are valid questions but I will not give up starting my day with my daily bible reading. That is a must. But how do I do it?

I wish I had some magic answer but to be honest, I don't. I am kinda feeling perplexed and wondering if I am really biting off more than I can chew but when I do succeed in a successful morning workout I am a better me at work and at home. That matters. It helps me keep depression and anxiety at bay. That matters.

I also leave for work at 5:30 am. That matters too. So how can I fit it all in?

You may think I have plenty of time, and maybe I do. Maybe it is like my home budge if I just look at it in black and white it will start making sense. Maybe you can give me some tips.

This is my typical morning:

  • Wake up and feed the pets (a bunny, guinea pig, and bird). If the bunny had a messy night, I need to clean out his potty. 
  • Put away dishes from drying rack while making my coffee - I drink cold brew so I literally just need to put in a mug, add creamer, top with water and microwave but some days I do need to start a new batch. 
  • Change into workout clothes while coffee is heating up.
  • Sit down at the table and do my daily bible reading and right now, during Lent, I am also doing a daily reflection. This takes about 20 minutes.
  • Workout with the goal to run and say the rosary and if I am super lucky, do some cross training too.
  • Shower and get dressed for work.
  • Wake darling daughter up.
  • Pack lunches.
  • Prep coffee to go for on my way down to work.
  • Say goodbye to darling daughter and walk out the door for work.

At first glance I would say you would question the pets and putting away dishes but I do it to help dear hubby. He feeds the two outside bunnies and cleans any dishes left in the sink, which can include my morning coffee mug, etc. He needs to do this before taking darling daughter to school and if he leaves the dishes, it is all left for me when I get home from work. And nothing against him but he doesn't really know where everything goes, will leave dishes out for me to put up, or will put them in the craziest places. Ironically, my mom says my dad used to do the exact same thing. And I do want to help him.

Which brings me back to square 1, I need to get up and moving earlier to fit it all in. Maybe I just need to move my alarm out of reach forcing me to get up and out of bed. Maybe....just maybe....that will work.

Moms, how do you do it?

P.S. I am happy to share this deal with you as a Bondi Band ambassador. They have amazing new state headbands and the Hawaii band is so cute! I may need to get one and you can too PLUS you can get 10% off with my friends and family code, EGFITNESS. Check them out HERE.

3.06.2018

Starting (or restarting) a fitness program

Sometimes the hardest part is starting.

This is a good motto for so many things in life so today I want to help you start.

Start a running program, start a new fitness routine, or even restart. In over 6 years of running at least one mile a day and adding cross training into my program, I know a lot about restarting. Restart is sometimes the most important key you can press in your fitness routine. Restart is sometimes even harder to hit than the initial start key because now you may feel weighed down and defeated. Don't let that stop you. Restart.

For those looking for a running program to add running into your life (think newbies), here is a good plan for you. Let's just commit to 4 weeks right now and 30 minutes a day four days a week. Before each workout, be sure to warm up and then cool down and stretch afterwards. Yes, I believe stretching matters but do it with a warm body, not a cool one.
  • Week 1: Run 1 minute, Walk 2 minutes. Repeat this interval for 30 minutes. 
  • Week 2: Run 2 minutes, Walk 2 minutes. Repeat this interval for 30 minutes.
  • Week 3: Run 2 minutes, Walk 1 minutes. Repeat this interval for 30 minutes.
  • Week 4: Run 3 minutes, Walk 1 minute. Repeat this interval for 30 minutes.

If this workout is not a good fit for you, I understand. It is hard to make a one-size-fits-all running program and I am happy to say, I am a certified running coach and can help you out. Just email me for a specific running program tailored for you. I can do 4 week, 8 week, or 12 week plans. Email me for pricing and details based on your needs but since I am a mom on a budget, I want fitness to be affordable for you. I have seen coaches charging hundreds for their services. I just don't want to do that and my plans start at $10.

For those seasoned runners who have fallen off their game due to injury or other things in life, restarting can be hard especially if you start comparing your performance to past performance. DON'T! It won't do you any good. Restart and change things up if you can either by running somewhere new if you run outside or altering how you run on the treadmill.

In my recent restart, I changed the focus on my treadmill runs. I moved away from the normal tunes and accepted starting at a slower pace. I would rather run 5.3 miles slower than my past performance than 1 mile faster and feeling like a failure since my legs ache. And recently I am tying this run time into my prayer time to focus on others and prayers versus my own performance. Sometimes rigid schedules can get me back on track, other times, flexibility helps. My goal right now - move at least one hour a day with my daily running and cross training and having two just a mile days a week. It does not need to be all 110% effort...just do it...and I am feeling the rust fall off my legs and my paces are improving. I think this is because I am running happy and by feel and running is a huge mental game and I am allowing myself two down days each week.

For those new to cross training or in a rut in cross training, my advice is pretty much the same. HAVE FUN! I totally love Beachbody on Demand and nope, I am no longer a Beachbody Coach. To be honest, I needed the coaching business fees and nutritional item money to go to darling daughter's horseback riding but I have kept the Beachbody on Demand All Access pass going. That is an investment in me and a better value than a gym. I have access to hundreds of programs and love so many of them. It makes it easy to do a new routine and change things up and y'all, that matters. It makes your training more effective and keeps you more mentally engaged.

Finally, what you eat matters. It truly does. Pay attention to how your body feels with the food you eat. Dairy makes my stomach hurt, too much coffee makes me stuffy and makes my eyes feel dry (it is true - I use my dry eyes as a cue to hydrate better and it works), and carbs can lead me feeling bloated. So now I pretty much wiped out my faves - not really. I do enjoy veggies especially bok choy and I adore hummus, pickles, beans (but I can't do too many of them either), and potatoes (within reason).

I keep certain items in the house as the mainstay for snacking and meals for the family and pets: bananas, oranges, frozen strawberries, frozen blueberries or triple berries, grapefruit cups, mandarin orange cups, applesauce, lettuce, celery, carrots PLUS we add in other delights from time to time. These include watermelon, pineapple, apples, pears, kiwi, peppers, tomatoes, sugar snap peas, bok choy, asparagus, artichokes, and salad kits.

I love seeing my 10 year old daughter start to make healthier choices on her own. "Mom, I am hungry and I am going to choose a healthier snack" and grabs an apple versus treats of the past like goldfish (although she still eats those from time to time). Or she may say, "Mom, I am going to have a snack but only 3 pretzels". Or, "Mom, I want a snack and I want pretzels but I already had some today at school. I am going to get a fruit cup."

It is rewarding to see this happen as it is the fruit of my efforts, so to speak. Knowing that what I do and eat impacts her is a motivation in itself. If I give up on my workouts and she sees me quitting, how will she not give up when the horseback riding gets tough? If I am constantly fueling my body with junk, how will she not do the same? And if I don't make the effort to keep nutritional food in the house, how can she pick the good stuff?

But I am not crazy about it. She also gets Lucky Charms and other fun kid stuff. Hey, I ate Lucky Charms as a kid and believe it teaches moderation and good food choice. Plus, I want to be able to eat a cookie and not feel guilty for "ruining a diet" or all that other guilt that many women may carry on their shoulders.

Honey, you are beautifully made and we all have fat on our bodies and skin....we have skin! We all have folds and eventually we will all have wrinkles. Wear your skin with pride knowing that there is only one you and you are perfectly made. Take care of your body and it will take care of you.

God bless and have a beautiful week!

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for the God given ability to run every day. 

Daily Bible Verse: You are altogether beautiful, my love; there is no flaw in you. ~ Song of Solomon 4:7

3.01.2018

February 2018 Training Report

YIKES!

Only 17 workout hours done in February. This is down from 26 in January and even with February being a shorter month, I was off target. But in all reality, it makes sense. February traditionally is a very tough month for me. It is the busiest month at work, darling's birthday, my dad's birthday and that always brings around sad, low motivation days as I miss him so much, and this month I lost another dear friend to cancer. So instead of beating myself up over low mileage and less hours, I am going to celebrate that I did workout for 17 hours. This includes running and cross training. You can see the overall gist in this workout calendar.


Seeing this feature on Strava makes me want to make better notes to myself about how I feel after my RSD (running streak day) notation to really see how my overall mood was for the month. I logged 69 miles bringing my 2018 miles to 154 and my streak miles to 9,984. That is definitely better than no miles.

And to be completely transparent, I am struggling with getting up at 3:00 am to do my bible reading and workouts before work. I do not want to give up either and have limited time after work with darling daughter riding three days a week and we are attending healing ministry once a week. Fortunately, that is back to back with one of her riding days so I have a few open days a week. I just need to establish a solid routine and try my best to stick to it. I wouldn't give up darling daughter riding horses or us attending healing ministry for anything! Those moments matter.

I did kinda slip on my cross training and incorporating new workouts. That had a definite impact on my overall workout hours. I am at 10 new workouts for 2018 and if I stick to this pace for the remainder of the year, I will be at 60 - 10 short of my goal. I need to up my game. Not only this but also for miles. My goal is to break 10,000 streak miles so I need to average 101.6 miles per month for the rest of the year. YIKES AGAIN!

This is not completely out of reach as it is something I have done in the past and just this past January I pulled off 85 miles. I can do this. I can do this. I can do this.

I will do this. I will do this. I will do this.

But since I love to analyze and see my baby steps, that 101.6 miles a month is about 3.4 miles a day - approximate as months have different number of days but you get the point. I need to run more!

And I do want to run more so that makes this a happy situation to be in. A chance to up my game. A chance to keep my eyes on the prize. A chance to not give up when the going gets tough. A chance to not make excuses. A chance to make a difference - one step, one jab, one crunch at a time.

Are you in?

Great!

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And workout in style in the brand I love and their new BondiWear. You can also enjoy comfort in the day with their line of undies (order a size up, they run small) or recover under the comfort of theire weighted blankets. You can get 10% off of your Bondi Band purchases. Just use EGFITNESS (yes, same coupon code, different company, different ambassadorship).

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for what I did accomplish this month.

Daily Bible Verse: Let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us. ~ Hebrews 12:1

2.26.2018

Running Streak Day 2251 & Marriage

2,251 days.

6 years, 1 month, 27 days.

That is how long I have been running at least one mile a day. Some days those miles are pitifully slow and I can say that about myself. And I am saying it without criticism.

Years ago if I ran a slow, slow mile I would have felt like a failure. I graded myself and felt myself good and worthy if I ran a mile in x pace. And then if I ran x miles a week I was a good runner. And breaking 100 miles a month made me a better runner.

Then life threw a wrench in my path and gave me a good dose of humility and reality.

I am not just a number.

Ladies, we hear that so much. I am not just a number. You are not just a number. Yes, you are more. I am more. We are more.

But there is still a number I track. My running streak. Only because that number is a true pat on the back as that number represents running just a mile, running 26.2 miles, running a 7 minute mile, running a 12 minute mile, running inside, running outside, running in heat, running in rain, running in Hawaii, Texas, California, Chicago. That number reminds me of my faith and that God truly does have my back.

In those 2,251 days I have changed. I have turned from dark, crazy paths of potentially self destructive behavior, low self esteem, a touch of self hate, to loving myself, forgiving myself, and more importantly, accepting myself. I am not perfect. I am flawed. But I am perfectly flawed when I don't let my flaws bring me down. Make me dislike or even hate myself. Make me want to hide and cry as I try to measure up to others and their expectations. Expectations I will never meet.

Ladies, why do we do this to ourselves?

The funny thing is when I came to my computer today to type this post I was going to say, hey, it is day 2,251 of my running streak and for the past few days I have run only a pitifully slow  mile as I was battling a cold. I was going to talk about how we all do get sick at times and to be merciful on our bodies when we are under the weather. To realize that through kind, loving care we can become fully recharged and able to function better. Resisting this process will under hinder recovery and negatively impact your sports performance.

Somehow those 2,251 days became a reflection of life and that makes sense as running daily is my lifestyle choice. Even on sick days I can manage an easy mile. That is really cool.

But those days are also a reflection of more than just running but mindset. A mindset that can be applied to so many areas in our lives. Even relationships.

Ugh. Relationships.

They can have nasty twists and turns. Marriage can be incredibly tough and you may find yourself wondering why your marriage isn't as happy as their marriage. Look, they are looking lovingly into each other's eyes, holding hands, being kind, smiling. They are smiling. Something must be wrong with you and your spouse. You aren't smiling.

But you see, those non smiling days are just like the ugh running days. The pitifully slow days. The torturous miles you never thought you could complete and then, you did. Those ugh days of marriage are part of the essential thread of your marriage. If I pulled out every bad day in my running streak and tossed them out because they sucked and didn't meet my expectations I wouldn't have a streak.

But just because they didn't meet my expectations, those miles weren't worthless. I needed those miles, those days, to keep my streak alive and running. Maybe we need to embrace our yucky relationship days in the same fashion.

What do you think?

2.22.2018

The Battle Within

Today's post is dedicated in loving memory of my father, who died on March 31, 2010 due to leukemia. This month I lost another great friend, mentor, second dad to cancer so I am a bit emotionally shaken up. 

I hope by honoring and remembering my dad today I can further my healing and perhaps hand out virtual hugs to those missing their loved ones today. Cancer is vicious and I know I am not alone in missing a loved one who has lost the battle. I am also not alone in praying for many fighting that battle still today. 

The battle within.

We all have internal struggles and the intensity or manifestation of them can vary from day to day, week to week, or year to year. The end of last year depression and anxiety were vicious and I am happy to say, I have been so much better this year! I am getting back into my workout routine and running with more zest in my step; however, the past week or two have been harder. This is part of the ebb and flow of workouts.

It could also be a side effect of my morning routine which is getting quite full with daily bible reading, time dedicated to The Love Dare challenge I am doing, and just having a busy day and getting to bed way too late to be up and moving by 3:00 am. But I refuse to get discouraged.

There is a lesson in here somewhere and just the other day I had to reflect on the business in life and how stress can make you irritable. Stress of losing a loved one is hard to totally remove but the stress of not sleeping enough can be mitigated. But it is a delicate balancing act with the stress of not working out enough which I know negatively impacts my mood.

Life is a dance. 

Sometimes you lead, sometimes you follow. Or if you are like me, you feel you are never leading but frantically hanging on to just see where your next move is but that in itself is a lie. I am a mom. I am leading whether I see it or not. Whether I like it or not. How I live my life shows an example, leads my daughter, in how she should live her life. And her seeing me not giving in on the non-negotiables - faith, love, kindness, God - is a way I am quite happy to lead her. And I thank God for the gift of my faith that will hold me up and carry me on when I feel I am falling apart and nothing I do makes a difference.

The peace within.

And through those battles I learn to better find and hang on to my inner peace. I am not perfect. I fall down. Case in point - an emotionally tough work day, limited exercise, and raging migraine added to the feelings of grief and missing my dad resulted in this momma being on a short fuse and raising her voice out of frustration when she just wanted a hug of support, to feel someone cared, to feel she was not alone. My soul ached and I felt bad for losing my cool but then it hit me today, I am clinging to my ideals of how things should be too much and if I just let go and let be I will be much more at peace.

May the peace be with you too.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for Jesus' example of submitting to God's will. 

Daily Bible Verse: Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done. ~ Luke 22:42

2.14.2018

Going Silent for Lent


Today is Ash Wednesday, the first day of Lent. Lent is a time to honor the sacrifice of Christ, to reflect on the passion of the cross, and to prepare our minds, hearts, and spirits to truly celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. It lasts 40 days, not including Sundays. It is a period of fasting and hopefully prayer. It is more of a solemn time and this Lent I am giving up social media.

Why?

Because it truly does tug at my limited time and can lead to the increase of more sinful feelings of jealousy, envy, or pride at times. Those likes and the pull of comparison can tug on everyone in various degrees. Some days I can be more resilient but other days, not so much.

I stay connected primarily due to family and my wonderful Catholic connections but I do want to wean myself of this and to spend the next 40+ days in prayer. Prayer for my family. Prayer for my friends. Prayer for myself.

This is a tough season for me. Not because of Lent but February is my "hard month". My Dad's birthday is February 22 and March 31 marks the 8th anniversary of his death after a heartbreaking battle with cancer. Leukemia to be exact. On top of that, a wonderful man that I truly loved as a second dad and mentor just died this February 10 after battling brain cancer. Fortunately February 10 is also my daughter's birthday - she turned 10! - so I can see joy in the suffering. It seems there is a lot God has for me to focus and reflect on this Lent.

But I do have a slight concern. Traditionally I post in remembrance of my Dad on February 22 and March 31. I have prayed and prayed on this and how it impacts my Lenten fast. I did get a sense that a post on those two days would be acceptable, if, and only if, I could resist all temptation to read other posts, notifications, or get distracted and engage. I am not too sure I can do that. Seriously, do you think you could log onto facebook, drop a post, and not scroll? Yeah, me neither.

I want to honor my Dad and remember him so perhaps I can just do so with this blog post, which was written and scheduled prior to the beginning of Lent.

My Dad was an amazing man. My hero. A really cool and fun dude!

The last 2 photos are from the last times I saw him.
I wish I had some magical and inspirational words to say that can erase the suffering of grief but all I can say is I am thankful my Dad, and my friend, are no longer suffering the pains of cancer on Earth. The cancer robbed them of so much of their zeal for life. The essence of who they were still remained but you could see the toll of the devastating illness on them. That is something I would wish on no one. 

Great men seem to be few and far between. Perhaps it is because I have been hurt by so many, lied to by too many, scarred by some, belittled and insulted by others, or just used for their own personal desires or gain. At times it makes me wonder if good men still exist today. Men who will stand up to honor and protect women. Open the door for them. Build them up with encouraging words of support and accept them for who they are. Are not threatened by women and what women can offer to the world.

And then I realize, two such men existed in my life and count myself abundantly blessed. Two men who never said a hurtful, unkind word to me and seemed to genuinely accept me for who I am and encourage me to grow how I was supposed to grow. Thank you God for placing these men in my life.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for my daughter and her shining bright light during this time of sorrow.

Daily Bible Verse: For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. ~ Romans 8:18

2.05.2018

January 2018 Training Report

I am pretty happy to say I worked out a total of 26 hours in January. I know, at first glance that does not seem much but that is close to an hour a day so I am happy when I consider where I am coming from --- a very rough fourth quarter in 2017. I also logged 85 miles and 7 new workouts!

If I keep at this pace throughout the remainder of 2018, I will log 1,020 miles and 84 new workouts. My 2018 goal is to break 10,000 streak miles which means I need to log 1,170 miles in 2018 and that means....run more! And I am not afraid of that as I am getting my running mojo back. I can do this!

My other 2018 goal was to log 70 new workouts and I am completely on par for achieving that. Yay me!

Seriously, this is worth celebrating big time as I was in the toughest and longest rut in my running life but thanks be to God, I am finally feeling like me....even if the past couple of days I have felt unmotivated and overwhelmed but even that is my typical me this time of year as work is overwhelming and crazy. Seriously, directing a race is hard. Be kind to race directors. It is tiring answering the same question a zillion times of day and you would not believe the gripes and complaints I hear about everything and race day isn't even here yet. Hopefully this torrential downpour of rain that I have experienced three times in the past 24 hours will be something of the past come Saturday.

And a blatant, begging ask...if you are on Maui please contact me regarding volunteering at the race. I need at least 15 more course marshals. It will be really, really fun.

On a happier note, January (or very early February as all my days are a blur right now) brought some really exciting news. I can now offer you, yes you!, 20% off of your SOS Rehydrate purchases when you use my coupon code EGFITNESS. Yes, this is an affiliate link as I am an SOS Ambassador and LOVE their hydration -- mango and coconut are quite delicious.

You can also get 10% off of your Bondi Band purchases and they have more than headbands. They have Bondi Wear now too! Awesome outfits to feel amazing in your workouts. Guys, this is a great gift for the active gals in your life. Just use EGFITNESS (yes, same coupon code, different company, different ambassadorship).

But back to January and goals. I am also doing better at getting up and working out dark and early again. It takes some real determination and let me tell you, it is hard to get that determination at 4 am in the morning. If you have any tips, please let me know. I would love them! The lure of coffee and bible time helps but it is still hard to pull myself out of the warm bed when it is so dark....let alone thundering like crazy. I flopped this morning convincing my lazy self that running on the treadmill in thunder and lightning was indeed not a good idea. Ummmmm.....once I got to work I realized how much better I would have felt emotionally if I just did it. I will remind myself of that come tomorrow morning when my alarm starts chiming at 3:30 am. Wish me luck!

How did your January go?

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for the 85 miles I logged this month.

Daily Bible Verse: 
Psalm 127 --->
Unless the Lord builds the house,
    those who build it labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
    the watchman stays awake in vain.
It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest,
eating the bread of anxious toil;
    for he gives to his beloved sleep.
Lo, sons are a heritage from the Lord,
    the fruit of the womb a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior
    are the sons of one’s youth.
Happy is the man who has
    his quiver full of them!
He shall not be put to shame
    when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.

1.25.2018

Benefits of working out

One of my primary lessons in 2017 was....depression and anxiety really sucks. If you have never experienced this, you may not be able to fully understand the crazy mental game and the overwhelming impact it has on your body, mind, and soul. I feel bad for my family who had to carry this cross with me if only by having to live under the same roof and not really be able to do much. But there are things you can do to help those with depression and of most importance is to be kind and not judgmental. 

But for those battling depression and anxiety, can I talk to you about exercise? Trust me. I know! You feel like crap and don't want to move. Every step is pure torture. You just want to climb into bed and hide. I know. I do understand as when my depression starts rearing its ugly head, I lose all interest in working out. All motivation is gone. ZAP! And the end of 2017 was pure torture as every step I did take while running felt like dragging a zillion pounds. I wasn't seeing the happy results I wanted to see but don't give up. It will pass. It will. And it did for me and to be completely honest, my faith carried me and God's grace gave me a break from symptoms. Thank you!

With that said, I still do not want to undermine the value of working out for depression, anxiety, and more. Exercise has many healthy benefits for all of us, yes, even us without depression or anxiety. Check them out!
  • Decreases depression symptoms - establishing and sticking to a schedule helps you reap the most benefits and when you are exercising, your mind may get a break from depressive thoughts
  • Alleviates anxiety - the repetitive movements and thoughts of exercise can ease the anxious thoughts especially when you can focus on the wind on your face, etc. while you work out
  • Reduces stress - stress makes you tense and regular exercise can flush out the tension and get your blood flowing…and happier thoughts flowing
  • Reduces ADHD symptoms - physical activity boosts dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin levels and this affects focus and attention - things that can reduce ADHD symptoms as well as depression, anxiety, and stress
  • Helps get you "unstuck" from PTSD and trauma - especially true for exercises that include cross body movements where you totally engage your mind in what it is doing and how your body is feeling
  • Helps heal brain from substance abuse - exercise can provide another avenue to deal with what may lead you to substance abuse or an outlet to do something different 
  • Improves learning ability - with a more alert mind, you are able to retain what you are reading better so why not try to read something while logging some miles on the treadmill
  • Boosts self esteem - nothing is more fulfilling than the sense the satisfaction you get after nailing a good workout or getting up early to workout 
  • Improves mood - this goes hand in hand with self esteem but it can also be the boost in mood to get out of grouchies after a long day and personally, it helps me be a better, more calm mom
  • Increases energy - yes, working out can increase your energy levels even when you feel too tired to work out 
  • Improves sleep - as long as you don't do a huge energy boosting workout right before bed time, the added physical activity in your life will help make you sleep more peacefully through the night
  • Reduces weight - as long as you don't follow each workout with calorie dense foods, you can stay a little slimmer with a regular workout program but be sure to vary your workouts as your body is pretty amazing at learning and adapting to allow it to work more easily
  • Improves your health - doctors say get moving for a good reason and who wouldn't want to decrease their cholesterol or improve their cardiovascular health
Y'all, it works!

And I am a work in progress and not every day is a 5 star amazing day. Tuesday was a tough day. I ran just a mile before work and at work I found out a dear friend's cancer moved into his bones. It broke my heart. It made me a bit angry about all those impacted my cancer in my life. Way too many. By the time I picked up darling daughter I was a grumpy momma and that workout I planned to do after work, I did not want to do. I wanted to take a bath, put on my pj's, and climb into bed for the rest of the night. My inner child was pouting and stomping her feet but....

Get 10% off Bondi Band with EGFITNESS
I ran another mile on the treadmill and did a new cross training workout that kicked my booty in more ways than one and when I was done....

I felt better. I couldn't change the bad news but I was more at peace in my life and honestly, pretty darn proud of myself for working out. I even commented to darling daughter post workout that maybe I shouldn't talk to anyone before working out. She laughed. I apologized for being a very grumpy mom. She forgave me. And in all of that there is a very important lesson that exercise does improve your mood. 

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for great workouts available at my fingertips that benefit my mind, body, and soul.

Daily Bible Verse: But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of stress. For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, inhuman, implacable, slanderers, profligates, fierce, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding the form of religion but denying the power of it. Avoid such people. For among them are those who make their way into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and swayed by various impulses, who will listen to anybody and can never arrive at a knowledge of the truth. As Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men of corrupt mind and counterfeit faith; but they will not get very far, for their folly will be plain to all, as was that of those two men. ~ 2 Timothy 3

1.17.2018

Muscle TLC - My top 4 go to's for aching muscles

Between running and cross training, and everyday life, I can end up with some sore and achy muscles on more days than I would like. This can range from sore legs to aching shoulders as I tend to carry all the weight in the world in my shoulders. Ladies, I bet you do the same.

Fortunately, I do have a few go to's that help ease the pain away.

#1 - Oils

I adore essential oils not only because they smell so good, and that in itself is relaxing, but because they work so well in my life. I have some amazing muscle blends that I can mix with an almond oil or coconut oil carrier base and apply to super sore muscles and it helps. I tend to do this right before climbing into bed and sleep my aches away....more or less. I won't lie, it won't keep DOMS away.

#2 - Weighted Blanket

Bondi Band has added weighted blankets to their product line-up and you can find them HERE under the FEATURED header. And yes, this is an affiliate link. The blankets are currently on sale so I can't promise it will work but feel free to try my friends and family code EGFITNESS to get an additional 10% off. Never hurts to try! I have also found that sleeping under this blanket not only helps aching muscles feel better but also eases my anxiety and helps me sleep more peacefully and good sleep also aids in muscle recovery. Win-Win!!!

#3 - Drink Water

I know this may seem ridiculously simple but I also feel many of us are walking around dehydrated and not even realize it. I have taught my daughter at the first sign of a headache think....am I thirsty? Have I had enough water? And to sip on some water. It also helps flush out toxins in your body and I truly believe it aids in my muscle recovery. On a side note, it also seems to help my own headaches and tummy bloating issues. Just saying....

#4 - BATHS!

There is nothing better than a good soak in a tub to ease worries and pains away and I can say with 100% confidence on my part, when I am doing a good job of taking regular baths, my body aches less. When I let them fall to the wayside because I am "too busy" soreness lingers longer in my body. And I love bath bombs! Bath salts! Anything to make my baths more delightful and yes, darling daughter has also learned the bath trick to relaxing and easing her aches from riding horses at least three times a week. We indulged in a bath pillow and bath tray and it also serves as a wonderful way for her to get in some of her reading homework. Now that is one smart girl! Why didn't I think of that when I was her age????

We get our bath products HERE and yes, this is another affiliate link. Just be warned, if you get the black bath bombs, they smell AMAZING but will leave your tub dirty.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for natural ways to ease my aches and pains.

Daily Bible Verse: Anxiety in a man's heart weighs him down but a good word makes him glad. ~ Proverbs 12:25

1.09.2018

Cross Training Success

Cross training matters. For runners, it is a way to add strength and flexibility to muscles that regular running works. It can also prevent overuse injuries from developing and improve running form. And ladies, as you get older those cross training workouts become more important.

In the past year and a half I have added two essential elements to my workout routine to target flexibility, which it seems I am losing over time, and strength. Weight training is a good thing and can help decrease bone loss too. And trust me, it won't bulk you up monster style but will give you the added strength to do your day-to-day activities.

My goal in 2017 was to do 52 new cross training workouts to keep my workouts fresh and exciting PLUS changing things up tricks your body and works your body better. I crushed my goal with 62 new workouts and for giggles, I am listing them here as maybe one or two may sound fun to you.


I am excited to move into 2018 with the goal of 70 new workouts and I better get started cranking some of them out. I will need to "steal" the TV from darling daughter while I cross train because in the past couple of weeks I have been streaming over my phone and listening to the instructions of a program I LOVE - Core de Force.

And since I am no longer a Beachbody Coach, I get nothing from telling you about these programs but if you want to support me in other endeavors....

I am a Bondi Band Ambassador and you can receive 10% off of most purchases with my code EGFITNESS and I am am a Elk River Soaps affiliate and darling daughter and I love their bath bombs. So much so that we invested in a bath pillow and tray to make the most out of that soaking time....and that is really good muscle recovery for a runner/cross trainer and horseback rider.

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for those who have supported me through mu affiliate links and more.

Daily Bible Verse: Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. ~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

1.03.2018

2017 in numbers

It's 2018. Can you believe it? Are you as excited as I am?

Before I go into what I planned to blog about I want to take moment to thank God for all that He has done for me in 2017 (and all my life for that matter). Many of you know that 2017 was a brutally tough year for me as I struggled with depression and anxiety at levels I had never experienced before. My mileage dropped as just running one mile was a battle of wills with every step feeling like I was carrying a ton of bricks...or ten tons! Rest mile days made no difference. Changed nutrition made no difference. Blood tests confirmed I was healthy and good to go. Nothing made a difference....except God.

I spent December in prayer with a Christmas novena (okay, 2 novenas!) and on December 26th I felt those chains on my body and legs begin to crumble and break away. And I am beyond grateful to be feeling some joy again in my workouts and that is encouraging as my power word for 2018 is JOY.

Each year is a year of growth and in 2017 I did grow in fortitude (2017's power word) and even those small growth rings matter. Those baby steps still carried me to my 6 year streakiversary on December 30.
video recorded on December 30, 2017

For those who are wondering about this, I started my running streak on December 30, 2011 and have run at least one mile every day since.

I have been tracking yearly running miles since 2011 and here is how that wraps up:
  • 2011 - 986 miles
  • 2012 - 1,460 miles
  • 2013 - 1,786 miles
  • 2014 - 1,767 miles
  • 2015 - 1,545 miles
  • 2016 - 1,220 miles
  • 2017 - 1,071 miles
I refuse to get discouraged by the downward trend since 2013 because life happens, my daughter is getting more active and I am spending more time with her and her activities plus crafting PLUS in 2016 I started cross training like a champ. 

And I mean champ.

My goal in 2017 was to do 52 new cross training workouts. I did 62. As of December 31, 2011, I have logged 8,830 streak miles. That makes me happy and sets me up for challenges in 2018. 70 new cross training workouts AND to break 10,000 streak miles so I need a 1,170 mile year. That is totally doable. 

For New Years Resolutions - I am not really making any. I prefer challenges and goals which I continually address and improve upon throughout the years. However, on December 30 I tossed out my crazy idea to dear hubby to go alcohol free in streak year 7 to see how that impacts my overall health and performance. Pray that he joins me in this challenge. And I am taking on my 2017 goal again to read the bible in its entirety and darling daughter got a chuckle that I am going to do it again. It is a great way to start the day and has become a part of my day I cherish as much as cuddling with my gem, watching her ride, running and working out (on the good days), and just striving to be the best me that I can be. 

I resigned from my Silent No More Regional Coordinator role in 2017 as I felt I was not achieving what I was meant to achieve even though the cause is still near and dear to my heart and I won't be silent. But I will devote my time and energy to the Healing Prayer Ministry that has started at my parish and I am loving being part of the lead team along with darling daughter. I feel at home with this and believe that the weekly meetings and prayers also contributed to my return to joy. I do not feel I am all the way there but trust I will be and that each struggle I face is meant to teach me something. 

I can't change the world but I can change how I see the world and everyone in it. I choose to focus on the good and to retrain my thought process to not get stuck in should's, hold up's, doubts, and negativity. I am done hurting myself and am here for you.

God bless and happy New Year!!!

Daily Gratitude: I am thankful for my dark journey in 2017 because it makes the light more beautiful to see.

Daily Bible Verse: Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; be not frightened, neither be dismayed; for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. ~ Joshua 1:9