Saturday, January 31, 2015

Be a runner

I once read this Pinterest quote:

I am a runner. Encouraging to me because I often feel so far from the goals I have! But every day I run I'm closer to them!
I have repeated this quote many times to other people.  If you run, you are a runner.  period.  Then I read this quote and it changed my running thinking.  (sorry, I couldn't find the fun Pinterest picture)

'Runners run no matter what'

This is hard for me, but I challenged myself to really become the person who gets out for a run when others would call it crazy.  I made the mistake of telling Hubs about my personal challenge.  Now he keeps me accountable for my crazy idea and hands me my shoes when it's 30 degrees outside and slightly raining.

It means running on Christmas Day after playing for hours with your kids and it means running on vacation or after a sleepless night of caring for a sick little one.

**I wrote this post about 6 weeks ago.  Funny how things change in a few weeks.  Life decided to up my challenge and I've realized how spoiled I've been since becoming a runner.  I had this wonderful life line in our local YMCA.  For the last 6 years, it's been my second home and part of my daily routine.  My kids literally grew up there and while they played with friends, I had 2 hours to do whatever work out I chose.  For several years, I taught classes there and on off days, I would run the trail.  In a way, we had to say goodbye to our second home last week.  I feel somewhat like a kid who has been kicked out of the house and not to be dramatic, but I'm crushed.  Since beginning our homeschool journey, my workouts looked like this:
My view from the treadmill

I sacrificed time and the trail and did my runs on the treadmill with Princess P next to me, quietly working on school.  I was doing whatever it took to be a runner.  Then, after my short workout, we would play in the gym or go swimming.

However, last week I was informed, in not a tactful or respectful or "hey you've lived here for 6 years and used to be an employee" way, that my daughter was not allowed there in the morning...she was not allowed in the fitness center and too old for the child basically she cannot be in the building until 5pm.  I feel like I should add, that months prior, I talked with the kids program director and told her I would be bringing my daughter and asked if there would be a place for her and she assured me there would be.  ANYWAY, my life line was cut for me that day.  It was way harder than it should have been and now I'm on this weird and awkward journey to figure out a new routine.

running 5.5 miles through the neighborhoods we grew up in

 We spent the week visiting family and it was absolutely what my heart needed.  I needed time away and time to think about what a new schedule would look like.  I'm pretty sure this new schedule entails me getting up at 5am and running in the freezing cold before Hubs leaves for work.  Fun times.  I'm scared.  I'm scared I won't have the courage or energy to maintain this crazy schedule.  But I decided today that running is more than just moving and more than moving even when you don't want to.

Running is a fight.

I wish I could make a pretty Pinterest sign to put that on, but you just get it in bold.  You have to fight be a runner.  Fight the outdoor elements or the boredom of a treadmill.  Fight laziness and the voices telling you to put other things first or that you're just not fast enough.  Fight for fitness and fight for yourself. 

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Needs improvement

Yesterday was Martin Luther King Jr. day and while all the public school kids had off, I made our kids do school because we're leaving at the end of the week to see grandparents (hurray!).  Princess P was finishing her reading time when the doorbell rang.  3 of the neighborhood girls were on our porch asking if she could play and suddenly my house was full of little giggles.  All 4 girls are very different, but they spent the afternoon making bracelets, playing restaurant and riding bikes.  I made granola bars for the bunch and helped them assemble bracelets and let them take my order 5,000 times.  And though they had fun, I realized how much I stink at encouraging friendships in my kids lives.  I didn't want to be feeding 3 extra kids snacks and their impromptu party was invading my "quiet"/get chores done time.  But I have to work on it, because I know how important it is to have friends.  As I think about it, I guess I need to work on improving my friendships as well.  There's things in life that are worth sacrificing time and energy and I need to make relationships more of a priority.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

What's your foodology?

Everyone has a different foodology.  What people consider to be the best way to eat and what they define as "healthy"are different.  Our family's foodology has certainly evolved over the years.  It's been influenced at times by people and circumstances.  For instance, there was a time in my life that I didn't bake and there was a time when sleep deprivation took me hostage and I didn't care what I ate.

Food marketing has probably influenced my foodology the most this past year.  It boils my blood that I have to put so much energy into making sure my food is healthy.  I'm tired of being deceived by the label "all natural" or "organic".  

Here's some examples:

1. Pure vanilla extract

It's not imitation, you think you're buying the good stuff and wham! you turn it over to find that they've added sugar to it.  Hubs and I ended up making our own vanilla extract.  Vanilla beans + vodka= vanilla extract.  Okay, so you have to let it sit for a couple of months, but it's worth it and much prettier.

2. Nuts

 I was looking for a clean afternoon snack and Hubs suggested some nuts.  Picked these up today, opened them up, turned over the package and along with that salt and pepper they advertise, they also threw in sugar and dextrose (which is just another form of sugar).  I'm so tired of sugar being hidden in everything.  Why can't a nut, just be a nut?!

3. Balsamic vinegar

This one got my blood boiling the highest.  We use balsamic vinegar as our sole salad dressing.  It's low calorie and has some good health benefits.   I was looking to restock it today and found that most contain added caramel color.  I looked at no joke, 10 different bottles of balsamic vinegar and only found 1 brand that didn't have the added color.  What makes me mad is the deception to the consumer.  Something as basic as balsamic vinegar, should be just that.  Stop adding junk to food that should be healthy!

My foodology is to eat food that I know what it is.  Sure, there's a balance and sometimes I make the conscious choice to eat something that will remain a mystery.  But for the most part, I choose to eat an apple, because I know it is an apple.  I bake my own bread and granola bars because I can pronounce the ingredients in them.

I read on a blog once, a statement that will forever make me laugh.
"You know what is organic?  Poison Ivy.  Just because it's organic doesn't mean it's a good idea."

Don't be fooled by labels and marketing and always be sure to look at the label!